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LOS ANGELES - Kevin Spacey issued a controversial apology late Sunday to actor Anthony Rapp, who accused Spacey of sexual misconduct toward him in 1986, when Rapp, now 46, was 14.
"I have a lot of respect and admiration for Anthony Rapp as an actor. I'm beyond horrified to hear his story," Spacey tweeted in response to Rapp's allegation to BuzzFeed that Spacey invited the then-teenager to a party at his apartment, “picked Rapp up, placed him on his bed and climbed on top of him.”
"I honestly do not remember the encounter, it would have been over 30 years ago," Spacey, now 58, said in the statement. "But if I did behave then as he describes, I owe him the sincerest apology for what would have been deeply inappropriate drunken behavior, and I am sorry for the feelings he describes having carried with him all these years."
Spacey continued: "This story has encouraged me to address other things about my life. I know that there are stories out there about me and that some have been fueled by the fact that I have been so protective of my privacy. As those closest to me know, in my life I have had relationships with both men and women. I have loved and had romantic encounters with men throughout my life, and I choose now to live as a gay man. I want to deal with this honestly and openly and that starts with examining my own behavior."
Spacey’s statement combining the apology with coming out was widely condemned on social media.
"Coming out is a beautiful part of being gay," journalist and author Mark Harris tweeted. "Attaching it to this vileness is so wrong."
I keep rereading this statement and getting angrier. Coming out is a beautiful part of being gay. Attaching it to this vileness is so wrong.— realMarkHarris (@MarkHarrisNYC) October 30, 2017
Dan Savage, Rose McGowan and other celebrities also slammed Spacey's statement.
Nope to Kevin Spacey's statement. Nope. There's no amount of drunk or closeted that excuses or explains away assaulting a 14-year-old child.— Dan Savage (@fakedansavage) October 30, 2017
Dear fellow media:— rose mcgowan (@rosemcgowan) October 30, 2017
Keep focus on #AnthonyRapp BE THE VICTIM'S VOICE. Help us level the playing field.
That Kevin Spacey statement. Nope. Absolutely not. Nope.— billy eichner (@billyeichner) October 30, 2017
Rapp tweeted the following in response to the BuzzFeed article:
"I came forward with my story, standing on the shoulders of the many courageous women and men who have been speaking out to shine a light and hopefully make a difference, as they have done for me. Everything I wanted to say about my experience is in that article, and I have no further comment about it at this time."
I came forward with my story, standing on the shoulders of the many courageous women and men who have been speaking out 1/3— Anthony Rapp (@albinokid) October 30, 2017
to shine a light and hopefully make a difference, as they have done for me. 2/3— Anthony Rapp (@albinokid) October 30, 2017
Everything I wanted to say about my experience is in that article, and I have no further comment about it at this time.— Anthony Rapp (@albinokid) October 30, 2017