Why Won't Scott Baio Be Charged for Sexual Assault?
Scott Baio may have played a children's caretaker on TV, but one of his co-stars says he was a child molester in real life. However, despite the actress's claims regarding Baio's behavior, the "Charles in Charge" star will not be charged with any crime -- at least not in this case.
His 14-Year-Old Co-Star
Nicole Eggert says she was just 14 when actor Scott Baio, then 25, began molesting her, including digital penetration and inappropriate touching. She claims the molestation continued for years and that Baio warned her not to tell anyone because he would get arrested and everyone involved in the show would lose their jobs.
For his part, Baio has denied all molestation and abuse accusations. He thanked the LAPD and the D.A.'s office for their "thoughtful investigation," and a rep for the actor said that Eggert "will be held accountable for her untrue and defamatory claims." It's worth noting that Baio does admit he had sex with Eggert, but he says she was 18 at the time.
Events Too Old to Prosecute
Despite witnesses and other evidence, the L.A. County D.A.'s office has said that they can't bring charges against Baio because the statute of limitations has run out, according to Eggert. The actress said that the D.A.'s office thought the case was "very, very strong," and that they would have prosecuted Baio if it weren't for the statute of limitations.
Although California changed its laws to remove the statute of limitations for rape, child molestation, and other sex crimes, that new law does not affect crimes where the statute of limitations has already run out. Eggert's attorney, Lisa Bloom, says she knew the D.A.'s office wouldn't be able to bring charges against Baio in this case, but says it could lay the groundwork if there are other victims who wish to come forward.
In light of the #MeToo Movement, many more sexual assault survivors are finding the courage to come forward about their abusers. If you've been the victim of sexual assault and you want your abuser to be held accountable, report the incident to law enforcement and let an attorney help you seek justice.
- Find an Attorney Near You (FindLaw's Lawyer Directory)
- Child Abuse Overview (FindLaw's Learn About the Law)
- '7th Heaven's' Stephen Collins Responds to Molestation Allegations (FindLaw's Celebrity Justice)
- Dennis Hastert Sentenced to 15 Months for Past Child Molestation (FindLaw's Blotter)
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