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Porn Star Ron Jeremy Found Incompetent To Stand Trial Due To Severe Dementia
A Los Angeles Superior Court Judge declared adult film star Ron Jeremy unfit for trial due to his "severe dementia." He was accused of sexually abusing 21 victims, and is charged with more than 30 counts of sexual assault, including 12 counts of rape.
Former adult film star Ron Jeremy — accused of 34 counts of sexual assault, including 12 counts of rape — was declared mentally unfit to stand trial on Tuesday due to “severe dementia.”
Los Angeles Superior Court Judge Ronald S. Harris determined that the 69-year-old, whose legal name is Ronald Hyatt, is in “incurable neurocognitive decline” after reviewing reports from both the prosecution and Jeremy’s defense, according to the Associated Press. Prosecutors have asked that Jeremy be periodically reevaluated.
After he was first charged in June of 2020 with raping four women he had met at bars along the Sunset Strip in L.A., dozens more women came forward accusing Jeremy of abusing them at parties, adult film conventions and on porn sets.
Last August, the one-time adult film star pleaded not guilty to a dozen counts of forcible rape, seven counts of forcible oral copulation, six counts of sexual battery by restraint and various accounts of sexual offenses on women while they were asleep or with foreign objects, according to the Los Angeles Times. The oldest alleged assaults took place in 1996.
A judge cancelled proceedings in March of 2022, weeks before Jeremy’s trial was slated to begin, when defense attorney Stuart Goldfarb claimed Jeremy did not recognize him.
“I was just up in the cell where he was being kept, and I tried to get his attention unsuccessfully,” Goldfarb told the court at the time. “He was unable to determine who I was and wouldn’t accommodate both myself and the bailiff to fit into the wheelchair to come down here. I don’t think he should be forced to come down here under these circumstances.”
L.A. County Deputy District Attorney Paul Thompson previously told the L.A. Times that prosecutors can find no evidence of Jeremy faking his symptoms.
“As a result of the agreement of the experts, the defendant will be declared incompetent to stand trial ... his prognosis for improvement is not good,” Thompson told the outlet. “If he does not improve, we will not be able to try him for his crimes.”
“Because criminal proceedings are suspended as long as he is incompetent, we also cannot get a guilty plea from him or discuss other measures to get justice for the victims in this case.”
Adult industry insiders told VICE News that, regardless of whether he stands trial, Jeremy has still lost in the court of public opinion.
“I don’t think [Jeremy] being declared mentally incompetent is going to embolden anyone except for the men who are already looking for an excuse for their own behavior,” porn actress Ginger Banks told the outlet.
Corey Silverstein, an attorney who specializes in the adult industry, told VICE that Jeremy’s legacy has been irreparably tarnished.
“This guy, before all the allegations came out, was [revered] as one of the most popular adult male performers of the generation and that’s not the case anymore.
Jeremy, ranked #1 on Adult Video News’ “50 Top Porn Stars of All Time” list, has been featured in more than 2,000 adult films and has made appearances in hundreds of mainstream Hollywood titles.
Silverstein acknowledged that Tuesday’s court decision would be “extremely hard” for those who came forward against Jeremy.
“It is extremely hard for someone in the adult entertainment industry to come forward to begin with,” he said. “For a lot of these victims, this is now the trauma: You had the trauma of going through what he allegedly did, and now you have the trauma because he will never actually be tried.”
Lianne Young, one of the 21 women and girls ranging in age from 15 to 51 who accused Jeremy of assault, told the Times she was “kind of numb” following Tuesday’s ruling.
“It’s going to come down to public opinion now, and public opinion has looked at Ron like a god,” she said.
According to transcripts of grand jury testimony from Jeremy’s accusers obtained by The Associated Press, Jeremy allegedly would typically lure and trap victims into a small secluded space, often the bathroom of his favorite West Hollywood bar and grill, to sexually assault them.
A hearing to place Jeremy in a state-run institution will take place next month, according to the L.A. Times, which Silverstein characterized as a "punishment in and of itself."
“This is going to be a mixture of him in a jail cell and a medical institution. He was basically taken off the streets for the rest of his life,” the attorney told VICE.