‘Bachelorette’ Contestant Leo Dottavio Denies Sexual Harassment Accusations

“No one has ever come to me in any way shape or form and told me I made them feel uncomfortable,” reality contestant tells TheWrap

Last Updated: August 3, 2018 @ 12:16 PM

“Bachelorette” contestant Leo Dottavio is speaking out after being accused of sexual harassment.

“No one has ever directly accused me of sexual harassment. No one has ever come to me in any way shape or form and told me I made them feel uncomfortable,” Dottavio said in a statement to TheWrap.

Dottavio, who is a contestant on the current season of the ABC reality show, was called out by fellow contestant Bekah Martinez over old Instagram comments. She also apparently shared accusations from other women of Dottavio’s alleged harassing behavior. In his statement, the 31-year-old admitted to some poor behavior but denied ever having crossed the line.

“Did I do things in college that I would be embarrassed about now? Absolutely,” he said. “Was I a victim of my culture, the times, movies? Yes. I have grown as a person since college! I am not the man I was 2 years ago let alone 14 years ago.”

Dottavio’s statement follows screenshots posted by former “Bachelor” contestant Bekah Martinez on her Instagram of messages from women who said Dottavio had aggressively pursed them sexually or sent them unwanted explicit messages in the past. Martinez also shared a screenshot of a five-year-old Instagram comment in which Dottavio allegedly told a women “You need my big d–k.”

“Some great guys from this season,” Martinez wrote.

ABC and producers at Warner Bros. TV declined to comment when reached by TheWrap.

In his statement, Dottavio said he has never been approached by anyone who said he made them feel uncomfortable.

“It’s important for women to speak out if they felt harassed,” he said. “I welcome that. If there was anyone I made feel uncomfortable why not come to me? I would love an opportunity to right my wrongs and speak to any woman that wants to tell me how and when I made them feel uncomfortable.”

Read Dottavio’s statement in full:

“There have been some recent stories about me that have garnered attention and I want to address them. I want to start by saying no one has ever directly accused me of sexual harassment. No one has ever come to me in any way shape or form and told me I made them feel uncomfortable. Now with that being said I am NOT A PERFECT person nor have I ever claimed to be.  Did I do things in college that I would be embarrassed about now? Absolutely. Was I a victim of my culture, the times, movies? Yes. I have grown as a person since college! I am not the man I was 2 years ago let alone 14 years ago. It’s important for women to speak out if they felt harassed. I welcome that. If there was anyone I made feel uncomfortable why not come to me? I would love an opportunity to right my wrongs and speak to any woman that wants to tell me how and when I made them feel uncomfortable. I want to take this as an opportunity to better myself and the treatment of women in my life.”

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