Alexander Polinsky, the second former Charles in Charge star to level sexual misconduct claims against Scott Baio, is alleging child abuse and sexual harassment at the hands of the star of the 1980s family sitcom.
At a press conference Wednesday afternoon with Hollywood attorney Lisa Bloom, Polinsky addressed his allegations against the 57-year-old actor.
"I was sexually harassed by Scott Baio and ultimately assaulted by him between the ages of 12 to 15 years old," said Polinsky, who was joined by Nicole Eggert, his Charles in Charge co-star who has previously accused Baio of sexually abusing her as a minor.
Polinsky said the alleged abuse started during his first year on the show when, at age 11, he walked in on Baio acting "sexual in nature" with 14-year-old Eggert, who was sitting on the adult star's lap.
"I was so naive, I innocently hopped on his lap expecting to hear a story about Fonzie or 'Happy Days,'" Polinsky said. "Scott was a hero to me. Instead of telling us a story, he threw me off him angrily calling me a f—t while Nicole laughed."
Polinsky detailed a "pattern of abuse that was unrelenting" during his time on the show, which aired in syndication for four years.
Polinsky said Baio would describe gay sex acts to Polinsky and share his "sexual conquests with young girls and co-stars." He also alleges that homophobic slurs became a "running gag" on set.
In another instance, he accused Baio of exposing himself to him.
"Scott pulled down my pants in front of over 100 people," Polinsky said. "Another time, he laughed as he cut a hole in the canvas wall of my private dressing room on set and exposed his genitals to me."
Polinsky said he once startled Baio backstage and he "assaulted me by throwing a burning hot cup of tea in my face." Baio later apologized, but the alleged abuse continued, behavior that Polinsky called "sexual-themed hazing."
Eggert said she felt guilty for not standing up for Polinksy at the time, but said she was enduring her own alleged abuse from Baio as well. She said adults on set were aware of what was happening, but believes they were silent for fear of losing their jobs.
Polinsky filed a report with the Los Angeles Police Department on Feb. 6 after voicing his support for Eggert last month. In his police report, he corroborates Eggert's claims and details his own.
Eggert, who is also represented by Bloom, alleged Baio, who was then around 27 years old, took advantage of her when she was 14 years old.
"Then he started expressing his love for me and marriage in the future," Eggert said on Megyn Kelly Today. "Before my 15th birthday we were at his house, in his car, in his garage and he reached over and he penetrated me with his finger."
"He was playing not only on my emotions, but also my hormones. The issue with him is that he was our boss. He also was telling me, 'You can't tell anybody, this is illegal, I'll go to jail, the show will be over, everybody will be sued, you'll be out of a job, you'll ruin everybody's life.' And it's scary. That's intimidating, especially when you're that young," Eggert continued.
Eggert and Polinsky are asking for a public apology from Baio, but Bloom says any criminal consequences are now under the LAPD's jurisdiction.
"Child abuse takes many forms," said Bloom, who added that the LAPD is now taking reports of all sexual assault incidents regardless of when they occurred. "For little boys, child abuse can often mean homophobic slurs. Child abuse hurts, it deforms, it teaches children they are trash. Today is about rejecting all of that and it's about standing up against child abuse."
Baio has denied Eggert's claims, and he has previously said Eggert and Polinsky had "decided to team up against" him and told them both to go to the police if they had legitimate claims.
Baio is set to hold his own press conference with his lawyer in response later on Wednesday.
"Nicole Eggert, Alexander Polinsky and their attorney have brought a media circus to town, complete with false allegations, misleading insinuations, and pure sleaze mongering. If they wish to have a public conversation about their histories and movies, it will present a very different picture of why they are making these allegations," Baio's spokesperson told TMZ.
"There is no excuse for this behavior," Polinsky wrote in a statement to The Talk on Tuesday. "Both Nicole and I were minors. We deserved safe passage to do our jobs and also be kids. If we want to change the culture, we have to bring out the truth, take back control from the abusers and make them listen to the pain of their victims."