A week after a third accuser alleged Dustin Hoffman of sexual misconduct, the actor has been accused of exposing himself to a minor, Variety reports. Two other women have also come forward accusing the actor of sexual assault.
Cori Thomas told the magazine that she was a 16-year-old high school classmate of Hoffman's daughter Karina when Hoffman exposed himself to her in a hotel room. Melissa Kester was a recent college graduate when Hoffman allegedly sexually assaulted her while recording audio for the film Ishtar. Additionally, a third unnamed woman said that Hoffman assaulted her in the back of a station wagon and manipulated her into a subsequent sexual encounter that left her traumatized.
A 16-year-old Thomas met Hoffman at the United Nations International School in New York, where she spent the day with Karina and Hoffman.
“Either Karina or Dustin suggested that [Karina] should go home” to Hoffman and Byrne’s house nearby, Thomas said, “because it was a school night and she had homework. So she left, and I was left in the hotel room with him alone.”
After several minutes, “He came out of the bathroom with a towel at first wrapped around him, which he dropped,” Thomas said. “He was standing there naked. I think I almost collapsed, actually. It was the first time I had ever seen a naked man. I was mortified. I didn’t know what to do. And he milked it. He milked the fact that he was naked. He stood there. He took his time.”
Hoffman eventually asked Thomas to rub his feet. She complied.
"I didn’t know what to do in the circumstance,” she said. “I didn’t know that I could say no, so I did it. And he kept telling me, ‘I’m naked. Do you want to see?’ ” Thomas said that she pretended not to hear Hoffman as he made suggestive comments to her.
Thomas says her mother called up to the room from downstairs, there to pick her up. She did not tell her mother about the story until decades later.
“I was humiliated. My mother always had some instinct that something untoward had happened. She kept asking me, and I was so mortified, I never said anything,” Thomas added.
Kester met Hoffman while he was making Ishtar. She was dating a man who worked on the film and who invited her to the Malibu studio.
“We got into this conversation about Arthur Miller, and I told him that I wanted to write,” said Kester, now a producer of corporate instructional videos. “I told him about some projects I was interested in, and he seemed really interested. I’m embarrassed, thinking back, because why would he be interested? It’s stupid.”
Hoffman, according to Kester, suggested that he may want to work with her and asked for her phone number, which she gave him.
During another visit, Kester said Hoffman was in the recording booth.
“He was in the recording booth, and he was like, ‘Send Melissa in here. I’m bored. Send Melissa in here,’ ” said Kester, who characterized the atmosphere as joking. She went into the booth with Hoffman.
“He may have been being flirtatious, but it wasn’t to the point of being obscene, because my boyfriend’s there,” Kester said. “Then they get ready to do another take. I’m standing there, and it’s kind of a small room, and he grabs me, so we’re both facing out so we’re both facing the people in the studio. I’m thinking that it’s kind of flirtatious and funny, like he’s holding onto me, because I’m going to help him sing better. I felt awkward. It’s a little weird. He’s hugging me while he’s singing. But ha ha ha, it’s all a joke. My boyfriend is right there.”
"And as [Hoffman continued with the take], he literally just stuck his fingers down my pants,” Kester said. “He put his fingers inside me. And the thing I feel most bad about is I didn’t know what to do. I just stood there. I just froze in the situation like ‘Oh my god, what is happening?’ It’s shocking when that happens to you.”
She estimated that Hoffman kept his fingers inside her for 15-20 seconds, until he finished the take. Then she moved away from him.
“He kind of laughed,” she said. “Then I just ran out of there, and I sat in the bathroom crying. I thought, ‘Oh my God.’ I felt like I’d been raped. There was no warning. I didn’t know he would do that.”
A third woman, who asked to remain anonymous, told Variety that Hoffman also assaulted her while working on Ishtar, and that she had a subsequent sexual encounter with him that she characterized as consensual. She was 22 years old and had a non-speaking role in one of the film’s nightclub scenes shot in New York at Kaufman Astoria Studios. Hoffman allegedly approached her on set and told her “You’re a real actress, aren’t you?”
Hoffman invited her to eat lunch in his dressing room, which she did.
A week later, he invited her to a wrap party, and afterward offered her a ride home. The car was filled with other people from the set.
“I said ‘Okay, I’ll just get home another way.’ He goes, ‘No, we’ll get in the way back,' " she recalled.
The woman said that she and Hoffman lay next to each other in the back of the station wagon, which started moving shortly thereafter. She was wearing a skirt. “There are people inches from us,” she said. “And he just took his hand and stuck his fingers right up inside of me. I didn’t know what to do. He’s smiling at me. I was frozen. I was outside of my body.”
The woman said that she does not recall how long the unwanted contact lasted, and that she felt unable to do anything to stop it. “There were people there,” she said. “What are they going to think of me, that I’m a whore, if a say something? What would I say? He’s Dustin Hoffman.”
When Hoffman's driver dropped her off near her apartment, Hoffman put $20 in her hand and instructed her to go to the San Remo, where he lived.
“I didn’t know what to do,” the woman said, describing herself as being in “a kind of fugue state” triggered by her encounter with Hoffman and related to abuse that she suffered as a child.
She hailed a cab and asked the driver to “drive around” for a few minutes, then asked him to take her to the San Remo. There she said, Hoffman was waiting outside the building. She accompanied him upstairs, where, she claimed, he performed oral sex on her and they had intercourse.
When asked if she would describe the encounter in the station wagon as non-consensual, she said “yes.” Asked if she would describe the encounter at the San Remo as such, she said, “I don’t know.”
These are not the first sexual assault allegations brought against the 80-year-old.
Earlier this year, three women came forward with allegations against Hoffman detailing sexual harassment that they said occurred decades ago. In October, Anna Graham Hunter, a production assistant on Death of a Salesman in 1985, wrote that Hoffman harassed and assaulted her on set when she was 17 years old.
The following month, Wendy Riss Gatsiounis, now a producer on the National Geographic series Genius, told Variety that Hoffman propositioned her during a pitch meeting.
Last week, actress Kathryn Rossetter wrote in the Hollywood Reporter that Hoffman groped and assaulted her while the two worked together on Death of a Salesman.