In the wave of allegations made against actor Kevin Spacey, one of the most prominent was made by Harry Dreyfuss, the son of Jaws actor Richard Dreyfuss. Dreyfuss alleged that Spacey groped him when he was just 18, while his father was in the room and unaware. Dreyfuss tweeted out that his son was very brave for coming forward and that he was proud of him.
Unfortunately, Richard Dreyfuss is back in the news, this time with allegations of sexual harassment leveled against him by L.A. writer Jessica Teich. In an interview with Vulture, Teich explains her confusion seeing Dreyfuss come forward against sexual assault when he allegedly harassed her for years.
“When I read about his support for his son, which I would never question, I remember thinking, ‘But wait a minute, this guy harassed me for months.’ He was in a position of so much power over me, and I didn’t feel I could tell anyone about it. It just seemed so hypocritical.”
Teich detailed the harassment she had to deal with while working with Dreyfuss on an ABC comedy special in the 1980s, while she was in mid-twenties, and Dreyfuss over a decade her senior. In a story that is now uncomfortably familiar, Teich alleges that Dreyfuss exposed himself to her without her consent.
“I remember walking up the steps into the trailer and turning towards my left and he was at the back of the trailer, and just — his penis was out, and he sort of tried to draw me close to it. He was hard. I remember my face being brought close to his penis. I can’t remember how my face got close to his penis, but I do remember that the idea was that I was going to give him a blow job. I didn’t, and I left.
It was like an out-of-body experience. I just tried to swiftly get out of the room. I pretended it hadn’t really happened. I kept moving because it was part of my job, and I knew he was, at the time, a very important guy, and certainly important to me. I trusted him. That’s what’s always so weird. I liked him. That’s part of why it’s so painful, because of the level of innocence one brings to these things. I felt responsible, that I must have indicated in some way that I was available for this.”