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A new investigative Rolling Stone piece, the end result of nine months of research and more than 55 interviews, alleges that shock rocker Marilyn Manson was even more abusive than previously claimed.
The piece, published on Sunday, alleges that the 52-year-old musician — whose legal name is Brian Warner — had created an emotional torture room out of a vocal recording booth in his apartment. He’d allegedly call it the “the Bad Girls’ Room” and several former exes and colleagues alleged they were held there at times. Former girlfriends claim that he used it as a solitary confinement cell and that they were locked in there for hours. His ex, Ashley Morgan Smithline, told Rolling Stone that Warner repeatedly forced her to stay there.
“Even if I was screaming, no one would hear me,” she said. "First you fight, and he enjoys the struggle. I learned to not fight it, because that was giving him what he wanted. I just went somewhere else in my head.”
Warner has vehemently denied the accusations of Smithline, who is one of more than a dozen women to come forward to accuse the “Antichrist Superstar” singer of abuse this year.
Model Sarah McNeilly also accused Warner of putting her in the room when she dated the singer. She told Rolling Stone that Warner was physically abusive as well and recalled one 2011 incident of particular alleged abuse: “He threw me up against the wall, and he had a baseball bat in his hand, and he said he’s gonna fucking smash my face in. The physical violence was almost a relief. Like, the mental shit that he puts you through, that he infects your brain with, that he brainwashes you, you just want it to stop.”
The Rolling Stone piece also alleges Warner's pattern of abusive behavior dates back to before he was famous, noting that in a 1997 cover story for the magazine, Warner described his relationship with his mother as “weird … because it was kind of abusive — but on my part.” In his 1998 memoir “The Long Hard Road Out of Hell,” he wrote that he scarred his mother physically with a perfume bottle after accusing her of cheating on his dad.
The Rolling Stone story delves deep into numerous claims of inappropriate sexual incidents. Smithline, for one, claims that Warner choked and bit her and even carved the initials “MM” on her thigh without consent “for [his] sexual gratification,” according to a lawsuit she filed. She has also alleged he raped her.
Earlier this year, Manson’s former assistant Ashley Walters filed a lawsuit against him, claiming psychological and sexual abuse. In her filing, she alleges that Warner would “offer her up” to his friends to “please” them. She’s one of more than a dozen women who have accused Manson of abuse. "Game of Thrones" actor Esme Bianco also filed a lawsuit earlier this year accusing the singer of “constant abuse." Additionally, Evan Rachel Wood, who dated Warner when she was a teen, has come forward with similar stories. Wood testified in 2018 before a House Judiciary subcommittee on her experiences as a rape and domestic violence survivor in an effort to get the Sexual Assault Survivors’ Bill of Rights Act passed nationwide. Only recently did she name Warner as her alleged abuser.
Warner’s most recent Instagram post, posted in February, addresses many of the allegations: “Obviously, my art and my life have long been magnets for controversy, but these recent claims about me are horrible distortions of reality. My intimate relationships have always been entirely consensual with like-minded partners. Regardless of how - and why - others are now choosing to misrepresent the past, that is the truth.”
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