In new details on an old case, it seems there have been several new names added to a sexual assault case involving Saturday Night Live former cast member Horatio Sanz (left).
In the original case, a woman identified only as Jane Doe, says that when she was 15-years-old she was a "superfan" of the show Saturday Night Live. The woman says that she had hopes of being a cast member so, in the early 2000's, she started a fan website. In time the site drew the attention of Lorne Michaels, the series creator, and various cast members.
Over the course of several years, according to the filing, Sanz allegedly flattered Doe with compliments via online messages, gave her long-stemmed red roses as gifts, and supplied her with alcohol. Through the course of the inappropriate courtship, the filing alleges Jimmy Fallon (second from left), Tracy Morgan (far right), and Michaels (below) were aware both that she was underage and of Sanz's behavior toward her.
At one party, the suit alleges, Doe was visibly drunk and "cast member Horatio Sanz groped Jane's breasts and buttocks and rubbed her vagina, in full view of party onlookers, continuing the assault even as she implored him to stop."
After the public assault, according to the suit, Jane "not only felt sexually humiliated and degraded, but her lifelong career aspirations of working at 'SNL' ground to a halt – as the entire 'SNL' cast watched and her idols, Tina Fey and Rachel Dratch, laughed at her."
Instead of removing the minor from the party where drugs and alcohol were being served, the suit alleges NBC staff approached Sanz and asked "Are you fucking serious?" as their only intervention. Sanz later left the party with Doe and, in a taxi ride to Penn Station, penetrated her with his fingers and clumsily attempted to remove her clothes without her consent.
Doe is alleged to have texted a friend that she was relieved she had been wearing pantyhose underneath her pants that night — which she had done to appear thinner — because she felt Sanz "would have raped her" had he been able to undress her.
The Insider reports that, although the abuse occurred more than 20 years ago and has since passed the statute of limitations — which would ordinarily mean no legal action could be taken — the filing was made possible due to an amendment to New York City's Gender Motivated Violence Act (GMVA). The law allows victims of gender-based violence to file civil suits against their abusers and the recent amendment creates a two-year "lookback window" for expired civil claims, similar to New York's Child Victims Act.
The claims made in Doe's suit will be revived when the lookback window opens on March 1, 2023.
"NBC, [Lorne] Michaels, [Jimmy] Fallon, and [Tracy] Morgan enabled Sanz's crimes of sexual assault and battery," the filing read.
Of course no one names in the lawsuit has made a public statement concerning the allegations against them but, Sanz has seemingly admitted to his behavior. In a 2019 text message detailed in the filing, Sanz acknowledged Doe was 16 at the time of their first sexual encounter and apologized for his behavior.
"I wasn't really thinking," the filing said Sanz wrote to Doe. "But I really didn't do that with others. It was a fucking big mistake. I'm very sorry. If you want to metoo me you have every right. Just believe me I'm not like that anymore."
This is a serious mess and it goes to show that the things we do when we're drunk, or high, or just trying to fit in or abusing our power, or going with the flow, or not saying anything so we don't get bullied, or simply minding our business WILL come back to haunt us. Do I think that the majority of the people at these parties were high and not paying attention to what was really going on? Yes. Do I think it should matter? No. If ONE person knew that this woman was underage, then they should have made her leave.
Parents, we have to be more responsible when allowing our children to "fan out" over things. Being a superfan is cool until you're put in places that no child should have access to.
There's a lot of folks at blame for this one.