To those who are #SpeakingOut today, we stand in solidarity with all of you. We cannot begin to fathom the suffering and mental anguish you have had to endure. Your bravery is inspiring and could help change the entire industry for the better ✊❤️— Wrestling Travel (@WrestlingTravel) June 18, 2020
TRIGGER WARNING: This post discusses sexual assault and may be potentially upsetting. Please look after yourselves (and know if you have been a victim it was not your fault, we believe you)!
The pro wrestling world was shaken up today with several women coming forward to share stories of being sexually assaulted by male wrestlers. Soon the hashtag #SpeakingOut was trending. It started in the UK when indie wrestler David Starr was accused of [trigger]rape and sexual assault. The woman provided screencaps that seem to prove many parts of her story. Soon many other women, some also wrestlers, began sharing their own stories which ranged from being sexually harassed to assaulted by male wrestlers.
OP NOTE: be careful if you go into the tag on twitter as there are some graphic pictures and tweets
There are so many tweets but so far it looks as if upwards of 10 wrestlers have had allegations towards them (including WWE talent, which apparently led to them having an "emergency meeting" today). Many of the names have multiple allegations against them. Some of the names include Jordan Devlin (WWE NXT UK), Will Ospreay (NJPW), Joe Coffey (WWE NXT UK), Ligero (WWE NXT UK), Joey Ryan (Impact), Mikey Whiplash, Marty Scurll (ROH), Bubblegum, Kid Fite and Alexander Dean.
Several other wrestlers have voiced support for the women coming forward and are demanding that the industry change. The hashtag also has inspired several other women to share their own experiences with sexual assault not related to the industry.
At the time of this post being submitted there have been no official statements from the WWE, NJPW, Impact, ROH or other professional wrestling organizations (this post will be updated if there are).
UPDATE: Alfred Konuwa who covers wrestling for Forbes said the WWE sent him a statement which said "We take any allegation of this nature very seriously and are looking into the matter." Though nothing has been found about a statement online.
A twitter account called Expose Wrestling was created to help keep track of the stories. So far stories have been shared of over 30 wrestlers (and now also includes female wrestlers). The stories now also include Jimmy Havock (AEW), Bea Priestley (Stardom) and Alberto Del Rio (WWE).
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