The Bachelorette season two’s Meredith Phillips has accused the show of hiring a masseuse who drugged and sexually assaulted her while the show was in production in 2003.
Phillips revealed the allegations during an appearance on the Reality Steve podcast, saying that she had expressed being fatigued while filming to the producers, who then brought in a massage therapist to relax her.
When host Steve Carbone asked her what the hardest part of filming was, Phillips hesitated several times before she said, “Besides being always really tired…and some of the producers were…how do I say this…helpful but not helpful in terms of trying to make me relax.”
The masseuse, a woman, allegedly then gave Phillips an unidentified pill. “I just assumed it was an aspirin or something to loosen up my back, or Tylenol, or something. And it definitely wasn’t that, that’s for sure,” Phillips says. “The last thing I remember was she got naked and she was in the tub with me, and rubbing my back and rubbing areas probably she shouldn’t have. And then I was put in bed. I woke up naked. Don’t remember much.”
When Carbone asked her what she meant, she responded, “Normally [I] wouldn’t really talk about this, but I’m going to tell you because it’s bothered me for years,” and added that she had been “roofied” and “kind of accosted.”
Phillips says she didn’t report it at the time because she “wanted to protect the franchise, which is “f-d-up.” She considered exiting the show after it happened, but wanted to see her season through and has since tried to move past the incident: “It is a huge deal. I have worked through it and thrown it in the back of my mind. I had no control.”
She went on to choose Ian McKee who proposed, but the two ended their engagement a year later.
A spokesperson for ABC said they had no comment, as did a spokesperson for the production company, Warner Bros.