Following Olivia Munn’s decision to speak out about how the director of the new film The Predator attempted to include his friend, Steven Wilder Striegel, a registered sex offender, as an actor, Striegel’s then-underage victim has now come forward to reclaim her identity — and to issue a heartfelt thanks to Munn. Paige Carnes, 24, contacted The Los Angeles Times to reveal that Striegel, then 38, had been convicted for targeting her sexually when she was just 14 years old.
“Your abuse does not define you. With support from others and strength from within, you can overcome the label of victim and reclaim your identity,” said Carnes in a statement. “Support can come in many forms. Sometimes all it takes is one person speaking up for you, acknowledging your worth as a human being. I am extremely fortunate to have a Father and Mother that love me unconditionally.”
“I am also eternally grateful for Olivia Munn’s action. She spoke up for me. She took a stance for me. In turn she stood for all who have suffered like I have. To be acknowledged by a stranger, on a public platform about this issue is incredibly empowering. The positive feedback from social media towards Olivia Munn is uplifting and feels incredibly supportive for me personally,” Carnes continued. “I have no shame for what was done to me. I am not the one who needs to carry that shame. My name is Paige Carnes, former Jane Doe. I hope anyone who has suffered like I have regains their voice and their humanity.”
Munn’s decision to contact Fox after learning of Wilder’s criminal history had led to pushback from the studio. Munn said executives from the movie studio “chastised” her for making a fuss about his inclusion in the film. Streigel’s scene in The Predator was ultimately cut, but Munn told Vanity Fair that she felt as though her male co-stars had ostracized her in retaliation for potentially hurting the film’s financial prospects. She also criticized a number of male co-stars who gave the film’s director, Shane Black, a standing ovation at the Toronto International Film Festival, and questioned why none of them had publicly addressed Striegel’s casting.
“I kind of feel like I’m the one going to jail,” said Munn. “I didn’t go to jail, I didn’t put this guy on our set. I had this scene deleted. Thank God, honestly, that there is social media. It’s the fans and news outlets that’s confirming it to me that what I did was the right thing. If I didn’t have that feedback, I’d kind of go a little crazy thinking, Why am I being treated like this? That’s not OK, to feel like the bad guy.”
At the film’s L.A. premiere on Wednesday, Black issued a public apology to Munn and the rest of the cast for casting Striegel without telling anyone of his criminal history.
Read the full story at Yahoo News.