Woody Allen-Dylan Farrow Case Roars On: Counterclaims, and a 97 Connecticut Magazine Story

 
The New York Post cover from Feb. 2, 2014.

The New York Post cover from Feb. 2, 2014.

A war of claims, counterclaims, purported proofs and alleged lies has raged since Dylan Farrow renewed her allegations in a Feb. 1 letter online at The New York Times that Woody Allen, her adoptive father, sexually assaulted when she was 7.

The claims being traded, in a case that had been quiet for more than a decade after its explosive initial "close-up", were thoroughly explored in our definitive 1997 Connecticut Magazine story on the case.

It's a story that media outlets everywhere are turning to for grounding, and the author of the piece, Andy Thibault, was interviewed about the case live by the Huffington Post Friday.

Among the notable responses to Dylan's letter was this one: In a new story online at People magazine Wednesday, Moses Farrow defends Woody Allen, asserting that he did not abuse Dylan and claiming that Mia Farrow "drummed it into me to hate my father for tearing apart the family and sexually molesting my sister."

Allen and Farrow together adopted Dylan while involved in a long relationship that ended acrimoniously, and with Allen marrying Soon-Yi Previn in 1997. Soon-Yi was another of Farrow's adopted children.

And then Allen himself responded with a piece published in print and online by the Times.

Perhaps the most powerful response to Allen's piece was 10 Undeniable Facts About the Woody Allen Sexual-Abuse Allegation online at Vanity Fair, written by Maureen Orth, who, like Thibault, had extensively researched and written about the Allen case.

Dylan Farrow also responded to Allen's narrative defense.

And all of those responses tap directly into the issues covered in-depth in the 1997 Connecticut Magazine story, which can be read in this post.

Through it all, Woody Allen's team hasn't been pulling any punches in blaming Mia Farrow for the situation involving Dylan Farrow. This was Farrow's response on Twitter:

Meanwhile, in the leadup to the Academy Awards ceremony March 2, it's increasingly seeming like the real drama may center not on which film will win Best Picture but on the new heat being generated by the the storm of media attention over the revival of the allegations against Allen.

The latest round of controversy arose following the Golden Globe Awards. In accepting the Cecil B. DeMille award for her friend Woody Allen at the Golden Globe Awards in January—Allen wasn’t there—actress Diane Keaton rhapsodized about the legendary director’s special relationship with, and understanding of, women.

In a letter published online by The New York Times Feb. 1, Dylan Farrow revives her allegations that Allen "sexually assaulted" her at the Litchfield County home of her adoptive mother, actress Mia Farrow—allegations that surfaced in 1992 and became the subject of a controversial investigation. Ultimately, Allen was not charged.

The director's publicist, Leslee Dart, said in an email to the Associated Press Sunday, Feb. 2, that Allen had read Farrow’s letter--and from there the controversy gained momentum.

According to AP story published the following Monday by the New Haven Register, “Mr. Allen has read the article and found it untrue and disgraceful,” Dart said, signaling that Allen would fight the claims dating back to Allen’s tempestuous relationship with actress Mia Farrow in the early 1990s.

Elkan Abramowitz, Allen’s lawyer, said: “It is tragic that after 20 years a story engineered by a vengeful lover resurfaces after it was fully vetted and rejected by independent authorities. The one to blame for Dylan’s distress is neither Dylan nor Woody Allen.”

Meanwhile, as the New Haven Register followed up on that AP story, a former Connecticut prosecutor suggested it was possible for Allen to still face charges in connection with Dylan Farrow's allegations.

In that story, attorney Proloy K. Das, a former state appellate prosecutor now with the Hartford firm Rome McGuigan, said, “The act of taking the minor victim to the attic for the purpose of committing a sexual assault would be a kidnapping in the first degree for which there is no statute of limitations.”

The latest story published online by CNN Feb. 4 also cited a statement from Abramowitz: "It is tragic that after 20 years a story engineered by a vengeful lover resurfaces even though it was fully vetted and rejected by independent authorities. The one to blame for Dylan's distress is neither Dylan nor Woody Allen."

Reached by phone Feb. 4, former Connecticut prosecutor Frank Maco, who was the one ultimately deciding not to file charges against Allen, had this to say to Connecticut Magazine:

“I can’t comment on the substance of her letter to The New York Times, but, as the father of a child about her age, I hope she finds peace and solace. I hope she has access to my statement [of Sept. 24, 1993] so she can understand what I did and why I did it. My words are as valid today as they were 20 years ago dealing with a traumatized seven-year-old child in the midst of sexual assault allegations.”

Read the full Sept. 24, 1993 Statement of Decision by Maco. The key phrase: 'I find that probable cause exists.'

In her letter accusing Allen anew, Dylan Farrow writes in apparent reference to the Golden Globes, "You knew me when I was a little girl, Diane Keaton. Have you forgotten me?"

At the Golden Globes, in lionizing Allen, Keaton had said, “It’s kind of hard for me to wrap my mind around the fact that 179 of the world’s most captivating actresses have appeared in Woody Allen’s films. And there’s a reason for this. And the reason is, they wanted to. They wanted to because Woody’s women can’t be compartmentalized. They struggle, they love, they fall apart, they dominate, they’re flawed … .”

One of those 179 actresses is Farrow, of course, and her biological son Ronan took the Golden Globes honor of Allen as another opportunity to revive on Twitter the allegations that Allen sexually abused Dylan.

Farrow re-tweeted the post, and also re-tweeting the post was NBC News reporter Luke Russert, who referenced  Farrow being the subject of a revealing, in-depth profile in the November Vanity Fair.

In the Vanity Fair article, Farrow and a number of her children discuss their lives, including some of the scandals that have plagued the family—one of the big bombshells is the possibility that Ronan might actually be the biological son of her former husband Frank Sinatra—not Allen, as has long been believed.

In terms of the alleged sexual abuse of Dylan, the article prominently references and quotes from a story on the allegations written by Andy Thibault for the November 1997 issue of Connecticut Magazine.

See the full Connecticut Magazine story on the allegations as told through a profile of Connecticut prosecutor Frank Maco.

 

Woody Allen-Dylan Farrow Case Roars On: Counterclaims, and a 97 Connecticut Magazine Story

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