Two more women have come forward with sexual-misconduct allegations against comedian Chris D’Elia. According to a new report from CNN, two women allege that the stand-up exposed himself to them and, in one case, masturbated in front of them without their consent. The accounts come from actress Megan Drust and a woman who asked to be anonymous. The two join Laura Vitarelli, who had previously shared her story with the L.A. Times in June but also spoke to CNN for the new report. Drust and the anonymous woman’s account are new allegations. Through a statement to CNN by his attorney, Andrew Brettler, D’Elia denied the allegations and “emphatically states that he has never engaged in any sexual conduct with any woman without her consent.”
Drust alleges that when she was 26, D’Elia — whom she considered an acquaintance at the time — asked her for a ride home from a restaurant in West Hollywood, but when they both entered her car, D’Elia exposed himself to her without her consent. “Chris is leaning up against the door of the passenger side and looking at me in this really weird way and then he started to try to make flirty small talk,” Drust told CNN. “I was very confused because it just didn’t fit the moment. Then he took down his zipper and asked me to touch him and I said, ‘What are you doing? No.’ And because I wouldn’t touch him, he started to masturbate. I couldn’t believe it.” Drust said she got out of the car, asked D’Elia what he was doing, and then D’Elia “climaxed in his pants and then he zipped everything up and I said, ‘What’s wrong with you?’” D’Elia allegedly got out of Drust’s car after the incident and walked away. Drust told CNN that the experience “definitely made me not want to go out to comedy clubs, which was hard because a lot of my friends were comics … It really raised my guard and I stopped going to events and I never went to anything alone after that.”
The second woman, who asked to remain anonymous, worked as a manager at the Kimpton Schofield Hotel in Cleveland, Ohio, when D’Elia stayed there in March 2018 for a performance at the Masonic Cleveland theater. The woman told CNN that D’Elia called the front desk around midnight to ask for assistance regarding a broken air conditioner, and since there was no electrician on duty at the time, she went to D’Elia’s room in an attempt to help. “When I knocked on the door, he opened the door and he was completely naked,” the woman told CNN. “I was surprised, and I was annoyed that I just came all the way up just so he could expose himself to me.” The woman immediately left and returned to the front desk; when D’Elia called again for assistance, she told him he’d need to wait for the electrician to arrive in the morning. She told CNN that she reported the incident to her manager at the time and “was made to feel like it wasn’t a big deal because this isn’t really an uncommon thing to happen in the hotel business … I didn’t want to draw attention to it because I also wanted to keep my job.” The Kimpton Hotel & Restaurant Group told CNN in a statement that “[n]o incidents of guest misconduct were reported by guests or staff at the Kimpton Schofield Hotel during the dates in question.”
Vitarelli’s allegation, which was first reported by the L.A. Times in June, also includes D’Elia allegedly exposing himself. Vitarelli says she and a friend were invited by D’Elia to a “party” in 2015, when they met him after one of his comedy shows, but when they arrived at the address he gave them, it turned out to be his hotel, and no one else was in the room. After making drinks for Vitarelli and her friend, she told CNN that the comedian sat between them on the couch and “put one of each of his hands down our backsides and started groping us.” Shortly after, Vitarelli and her friend felt uncomfortable and found an excuse to leave D’Elia’s room. “He got up with us and followed us to the door and said, ‘Are you sure you want to leave?’ And he pulled out his penis and it was fully erect,” Vitarelli said, noting that it was “very uncomfortable for both of us” and they “left as fast as we could.” CNN’s report also notes that Vitarelli has hired an attorney, Jay Ellwanger, and is in the process of pursuing a civil complaint against D’Elia.
Additionally, two comedians spoke with CNN and said they were “unsurprised” when allegations against D’Elia initially began to surface. Comedian Bill Dawes, who has opened for D’Elia, told CNN that D’Elia has a history of exposing himself to people. “He would expose himself in front of other women when other guys were in the room with him,” he said. Another comedian, who asked to remain anonymous “for fear of professional repercussions,” told CNN that while she does not have firsthand knowledge of D’Elia exposing himself to women, she has seen him speak about women in a way she found “degrading, disrespectful, and demeaning.” Dawes added that when the Me Too movement began, a lot of comedians thought of D’Elia. “He just seemed really profligate with the way he would go after women, sleep with women, expose himself to women,” Dawes said.