Rose McGowan Speaks Out After Drug Arrest: ‘I Will Clearly Plead Not Guilty’

Actress tells New Yorker’s Ronan Farrow she will contest charges

Rose McGowan TCM Classic Film Festival
Getty Images

Rose McGowan insists that she’s innocent after she turned herself in on Tuesday to be arrested and booked on a felony drug charge.

“I will clearly plead not guilty,” the actress told the New Yorker‘s Ronan Farrow on Wednesday after she was was released on a $5,000 bond after being charged with possession of a controlled substance.

The actress is set to be arraigned on Thursday morning, at which point she will most likely be assigned a court date for the arrest following a Jan. 20 incident in which authorities say traces of narcotics were detected on items left on a United flight bound for Washington Dulles International Airport.

McGowan told the New Yorker she brought a slim wallet on her trip to D.C. and did not take it out of her bag during the flight. “I had it in the side pocket of my backpack, and I left it on my seat as I went to the bathroom,” she said.

Once she got off the plane she was calling a Lyft car to pick her up while standing at baggage claim. That’s when she noticed her wallet had disappeared. McGowan says she filed a claim for the lost luggage and tweeted the airline to ask for help in finding her wallet.

When a staff member was cleaning the plane McGowan had been on, that worker and his supervisor said it contained two small bags of white powder, which was later determined to be cocaine.

When an arrest warrant was issued by the Magistrate’s Office in Loudoun County, Virginia on Feb. 1, 2017, McGowan said her fear kept her from coming forward. “I was going to asap, but then things started to get really weird,” she told The New Yorker of her decision not to turn herself in right away. “I knew I was being followed and that I wasn’t safe. I even hired a private investigator to investigate whether the warrant was real.”

McGowan and her attorney, Jim Hundley, are arguing the drugs could have been planted argue that the drugs could have been planted, given the spans of time during which unknown individuals may have had access to the wallet.

McGowan, who said the police officers and magistrate she interacted with “were very polite and kind,” said she has used drugs in the past. However, she said she did not use any narcotics on that trip, which was to attend the Women’s March.

“Imagining I’m going into sisterly solidarity, I can think of nothing more opposed to that, energetically, that I would want in my body at that moment,” she said.

McGowan, who is is one of dozens of women who have come forward to accuse indie mogul Harvey Weinstein of sexual misconduct, believes that the arrest may have been an attempt to discredit her.

A source who worked at The Weinstein Company in September told the New Yorker that, before the news of the warrant was made public, Weinstein met with private investigators who were focused on getting McGowan arrested and leaking that information to the New York Post.


McGowan then tweeted about the charges she was facing in Virginia out of fear a story would break. “I beat him to it,” she said.