Lena Dunham Apologizes for Defending Writer Accused of Sexual Assault

NEW YORK, NY - FEBRUARY 02: Actress Lena Dunham attends the New York Premiere of the Sixth & Final Season of "Girls" at Alice Tully Hall, Lincoln Center on February 2, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by Neilson Barnard/Getty Images)
Lena Dunham / Getty Images
• November 20, 2017 10:32 am


Comedienne Lena Dunham apologized over the weekend after coming to the defense of a writer for her HBO show "Girls" who was accused of sexual assault.

The Wrap broke the news Friday that the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department is investigating Murray Miller after actress Aurora Perrineau accused him of raping her in 2012, when she was 17 years old. Perrineau alleges that she woke to Miller having sex with her without her consent after a night out drinking.

When the Hollywood Reporter asked her for comment, Dunham and fellow showrunner Jenni Konner defended Miller, saying the accusation is false and they stand by their employee.

Dunham wrote that she is "thrilled" by the recent trend of Hollywood women speaking out about sexual assault, but argued that "during every time of change there are also incidences of the culture, in its enthusiasm and zeal, taking down the wrong targets."

"While our first instinct is to listen to every woman's story, our insider knowledge of Murray's situation makes us confident that sadly this accusation is one of the three percent of assault cases that are misreported every year," Dunham and Konner said in a statement. "It is a true shame to add to that number, as outside of Hollywood women still struggle to be believed. We stand by Murray and this is all we'll be saying about this issue."

On Twitter, Dunham added that she has a policy of standing by those who have helped her in the past.

Dunham's comments conflict with her previous statements calling for women to be believed when they allege sexual assault and arguing that women "don't lie about rape."

By Saturday evening, Dunham apologized for her defense of Miller in a Twitter statement.

"Under patriarchy, ‘I believe you' is essential. Until we are all believed, none of us will be believed. We apologize to any women who have been disappointed," she wrote.