Sex & Relationships

5 Celebs Who Torpedoed Their Careers With Horrific Behavior

These public figures engaged in some truly abhorrent behavior.

Photo Credit: Shutterstock

On December 30, prosecutors in Pennsylvania’s Montgomery County charged Bill Cosby with three counts of sexual assault, 13 years after the first official complaint was filed against the comedian. Nearly 60 women have come forward with similar accusations in the time since. Of course, it’s strange to see the once-beloved TV dad rebranded as an alleged serial rapist. Listed below are five other public figures whose reputations exploded amidst allegations of sexual crimes. 

1. James Deen

Until 2015, porn legend James Deen was known as “the boy next door” of the industry. That all changed when ex-girlfriend and former costar Stoya publically accused Deen of raping her, tweeting, “James Deen held me down and fucked me while I said no, stop, used my safeword. I just can’t nod and smile when people bring him up anymore.” Nine other women have since come forward with allegations of sexual abuse and/or assault against Deen, including industry veterans Tori Lux, Joanna Angel, Ashley Fires, Amber Rayne, Kora Peters, Nicki Blue, Bree Olson, an unnamed woman who goes by T.M. and reality television star Farah Abraham (with whom Deen also starred in an adult film, unofficially dubbed Backdoor Teen Mom). 

In the time since Stoya’s initial reveal, Deen has made attempts to protect his reputation. On November 29, Deen tweeted, “I want to assure my friends, fans and colleagues that these allegations are both false and defamatory.” In an interview with the Daily Beast ,he said, “My job as a performer for rough sex companies is to engage in certain acts. If at any point I pushed boundaries past the point of comfort, I am sorry.” But his efforts may constitute as another case of too little, too late. Porn studio has since cut all ties with Deen following the allegations. Evil Angel also suspended its relationship with the performer. Deen has since resigned as chairperson of the board of directors of the Adult Performer Advocacy Committee, a labor group that represents porn actors.

2. Jared Fogle

In 1999, Jared Fogle entered the media spotlight for having lost 190 pounds eating only sandwiches from Subway. In 2015, the company’s former pitchman went from “the Subway guy” to “the Subway perv” after being sentenced to 15 years in federal prison on charges of receiving child pornography and repeatedly having sex with minors. “This defendant was obsessed with child porn,” said federal Judge Tanya Walton Pratt during the proceedings in Indianapolis federal court, adding, “The level of perversion and lawlessness exhibited by Mr. Fogle is extreme.”

During the hearing it was revealed that Fogle had more than 600 images of child porn, some of minors as young as 6. He had had sex with 16- and 17-year old girls who were victims of trafficking. The 38-year-old had also spent a “minimum” of $12,000 a year on prostitutes. Often, Fogle would travel to New York City to have sex with teenage girls at the Ritz-Carlton and Plaza Hotels. He offered an 18-year-old Las Vegas prostitute a $400 finder’s fee to locate even younger victims for him to have sex with. “Did you find me some young girls or boys?” he asked the woman in a text message, a detective testified. Also in prison on similar charges is Russell Taylor, former head of Fogle’s nonprofit to end childhood obesity, the Jared Foundation.

3. Josh Duggar

Former used car salesman and reality television star Josh Duggar got his very own slice of the spotlight after it was revealed he had sexually molested five underage girls as a teenager, some of whom were his sisters. Duggar engaged in other activity not exactly in keeping with his Christian faith. Turns out the "19 Kids & Counting" star had sex with stripper and porn star Danica Dillon not once, but on two separate occasions, while his wife, Anna, was pregnant with their fourth child.

A devout Christian who often discussed the values of purity, modesty and faith in God onscreen, Duggar is the former executive director of the Family Research Council, a conservative lobbying group in D.C. In an exclusive interview with InTouch, Dillon said, “He was manhandling me, basically tossing me around like I was a ragdoll,” adding, “It was very traumatic. I’ve had rough sex before, but this was terrifying.” Dillon passed a polygraph test before detailing the encounter to the publication.

But wait, there’s more. During the Ashley Madison hack it was revealed that Duggar had two separate paid accounts on the infidelity site. The paid feature included an “affair guarantee” that can “increase your changes of having an affair from possibly to definitely or your money back,” according to the site. TLC has since pulled the plug on the reality series and Duggar sits in a faith-based rehab center for “long-term treatment.”

4. Charlie Sheen

Just a few months ago, Charlie Sheen went public with his HIV status, though that should in no way constitute a scandal. What has helped drag his name through the headlines is the list of former partners who claimed he withheld that information before having sex with them. Former porn actress Bree Olson (who also experienced sexual assault at the hands of James Deen) lived with Sheen back in 2011. “We were sleeping together every single night,” she said during an appearance on the Howard Stern Show. “ When Stern asked if Sheen ever told her about his diagnosis, she claimed, he “never said anything." Olson added that when she and Sheen did use protection, he preferred to use lambskin condoms, an ultra-thin style of condom that does little to protect against sexually transmitted diseases.

In accordance with California’s disclosure laws, it’s illegal to intentionally pass along a sexually transmitted disease to a partner. For Sheen to be charged, the state would have to prove his desire “to use HIV as a weapon,” Scott Burris, the director of the Center for Health Law, Poly and Practice told People Magazine. “In some states you can be charged even if you used a condom.” The actor has admitted to paying out around $10 million to keep those who knew about his diagnosis silent.

5. Mark Salling

On December 29, 2015, "Glee" actor Mark Salling was arrested and charged with felony possession of child pornography. The actor, 33, was released after family members posted a $20,000 bail. According to the LAPD Internet Crimes Against Children task force, Salling had more than 100 incriminating images in his possession, material Lieutenant Andrea Grossman referred to as “disturbing.”

This isn’t Salling’s only brush with the law. Back in 2013, Salling was charged with sexual battery after former lover Roxanne Gorzela sued him for intentionally penetrating her without a condom despite her demands that he wear protection. She also claimed she became “overwhelmed with anxiety” following the encounter, worried she may have contracted a sexually transmitted disease. When she confronted Salling about her concerns, she claims he grabbed and pushed her, causing her to hit her head. “There’s no truth to this,” Salling’s rep told E! News at the time.

Carrie Weisman is a writer focusing on sex, relationships and culture. 

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