A former principal dancer of the Boston Ballet has been accused along with her husband of sexually assaulting several other dancers.
According to People, a previous lawsuit filed in the US District Court in Nevada over the summer initially stated that Mitchell Taylor Button used “his position of power and influence in the dance world to sexually abuse young dancers across the country.” However, an updated complaint filed last week has now also named his wife, ballerina Dusty Button.
In the court documents, at least five dancers say Mitchell sexually abused them with the help of Dusty. A dancer who filed the initial complaint, Sage Humphries, claimed she was groomed and repeatedly raped by the dance instructor while Dusty held her down when she was just an apprentice with the Boston Ballet.
Another ballerina who was identified as Jane Doe 100 said she was promised by the Buttons that they would make her a “star” when she met them as a minor. Then, she claims, the couple got her drunk at a party one night and brought her back to their apartment into “a room that had a mattress on the floor and an arsenal of guns hanging on the wall.” Dusty then allegedly restrained Jane while Mitchell sexually assaulted her.
And that’s not all. Mitchell has also been accused of abusing several young students from a Florida studio, including Gina Menichino, who alleged that he sexually assaulted her when she was 13 while they were sharing a blanket and watching a movie with other students. She previously told The New York Times about the incident:
“The whole game was to keep him happy. Don’t get him angry, or I was unworthy, and I would lose my dance career.”
Mitchell even allegedly penned a love letter to an unnamed minor at one point, saying:
“God sent you to make to make up for my lack of family. I could never love again so much as I love you, where you end and I begin is like a river flowing through. Take my heart, take my soul, I need them no more, if never again they fall upon the one I so adore. You’re beautiful inside and out, and are going to be so great as you grow. Never forget that no matter what, I’ll never love you less than I do today.”
The Buttons’ lawyer Marc John Randazza has since denied the allegations, telling Fox News in an email:
“Our position remains the same. We look forward to clearing both of their names in court.”
According to People, Randazza previously filed a motion to dismiss the original case, claiming that the allegations made “were written to make the press interested in this case and to enflame the anger of anyone who reads the complaint.” However, a judge denied it since even more people have since come forward with their horrifying experiences.
This is all just beyond messed up. Reactions, Perezcious readers? Let us know in the comments (below).
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