British singer Seal is being investigated for criminal sexual battery after an actress claimed he groped her. He has vehemently denied the allegations.
Actress Tracey Birdsall went to the police to report Seal for assault after she read his comments slamming Oprah Winfrey for her relationship with disgraced film producer Harvey Weinstein, who has been accused of sexually harassing dozens of women in Hollywood and suggested that she knew about Weinstein abuses but turned a blind eye to them, reported the Metro.
— Tracey Birdsall (@traceybirdsall1) April 30, 2017
Birdsall claimed that when she was neighbors with Seal in 2016, they developed a close friendship. But on one afternoon, while in his kitchen, Seal “lunged at her” and “forced himself on her, attempting to kiss her,” reported TMZ.
He then began “to belittle her for what she was wearing —insinuating she was asking for it—and he began to grope her breasts,” the actress claimed. She further claimed that after they were sitting on his couch he made fun of what she was wearing and groped her again.
She said she then left and had not seen the singer ever since.
Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department confirmed that a report was made on Jan. for the sexual battery and has opened an investigation.
Seal has denied the allegations made against him, according to TMZ, citing a representative.
“Seal vehemently denies the recent allegations made against him by a former neighbor for alleged misconduct more than a year ago. He intends to vigorously defend himself against these false allegations,” the representative said.
Seal’s comments were made in an Instagram post on Jan. 10. The post included photos showing Winfrey kissing Weinstein’s cheek and embracing him. They were overlayed with text stating: “When you have been part of the problem for decades, but suddenly they all think you are the solution.”
“Oh I forgot, that’s right…..you’d heard the rumours but you had no idea he was actually serially assaulting young stary-eyed actresses who in turn had no idea what they were getting into,” Seal wrote in his post. “My bad.”
He received backlash from social media users for his post where one user said “they were disappointed seeing a brother tearing a sister down,” according to the singer.
Seal subsequently posted a video explaining why he made the Instagram post.
“This was not an attack on Oprah but an observation on the toxic nature of Hollywood,” he said in his video on Jan. 11.
NTD Reporter Bowen Xiao contributed to this report.