Model/designer Lindsay Jones has come forward with a sad and disturbing new story about creepy fashion photographer Terry Richardson, accusing him of sexually assaulting her in a doorway back in 2007. She had agreed to meet with him at his studio to discuss a potential photo shoot.
As soon as she arrived at the studio, Jones said, things took a dark turn. She said she was cornered almost immediately by Richardson, who had a dog with him.
“He didn’t let me pass the doorway,” she said. “If anything, he more, like, cornered me in the doorway with his dog and told me to get on my knees immediately. No ‘How are you?’ No coffee offered. No ‘Welcome to my office. This is my bedroom. How was your day? Can I take your bag?’ ― nothing. It was only, ‘Get on your knees.’”
She did, she explains, because she was young and inexperienced and intimidated.
“Now that I’m older, maybe I would have ran out,” she said, engaging in a familiar kind of “what if” mental exercise. “I just didn’t feel very secure.”
Once on her knees, things escalated quickly.
Read the whole account of what happened here.. Be warned: It’s pretty graphic and disturbing stuff.
Now she’s coming forward because she believes it could help other women ― specifically younger women entering the modeling and fashion industry today.
Jones knows that there will be people who will question why she waited 10 years to come forward with her story. For years she was afraid to stir up drama or cause irrevocable harm to her career. But in 2017, she’s older and more independent, no longer convinced that her livelihood requires the buy-in of powerful men.
Terry Richardson “may be more powerful than me in the industry, but he doesn’t have that power over me anymore,” Jones said. “Whatever it was in my younger, more docile, aspiring, youthful self that I thought I needed from [powerful men] or the industry or their approval that I accept[ed] this treatment as part of the way it is, I don’t believe that anymore.”
Part of what pushed Jones to come forward now is the feeling that the culture is shifting, too. Millions have shared their #MeToo stories on social media. The “Silence Breakers” are Time’s Person of the Year. After a decade of worrying that speaking up might cost her her career, Jones thinks people might be ready to listen.
“What’s happening right now is some kind of movement. There is some kind of strength in numbers,” Jones said. “Maybe it can make a ping of a difference in the world in a positive way eventually if we start to stand up for ourselves a little bit. So I guess that’s the real hope.”
Of course, rumors about Richardson have been swirling around the fashion community forever, but until recently it seems nobody had any intention of doing anything about him. Now, in the wake of the #metoo movement, things might be changing.
In October, both Condé Nast and Hearst cut ties with the photographer. (Richardson had reportedly already shot the January 2018 cover of Elle magazine.) Diesel dropped him, as did Valentino and Bulgari. (Other brands, including H&M, vowed to stop working with the photographer back in 2013.) But Richardson has continued to associate himself with smaller publications, such as Document Journal, Purple Magazine and CR Fashion Book (former Vogue Paris Editor-in-Chief Carine Roitfeld’s magazine) as recently as October. HuffPost contacted all three publications to ask if they planned to work with Richardson in the future and received no response.
Maybe this will be nail on the coffin?