Regina Simons says she was 18 and an extra on Steven Seagal’s 1994 film “On Deadly Ground” when he invited her to a wrap party at his Beverly Hills home. But when she arrived, she said, he was the only one there.
“He took me into this room and then just closed the door and started kissing me,” she said. “He then took my clothes off and before I knew it he was on top of me, raping me… I wasn’t sexually active yet. People always talk about fight-or-flight. But no one talks about the freeze.”
Simons is one of more than a dozen women who have accused Seagal of sexual misconduct, but she appears to be the first to publicly accuse him of rape. She and another woman, Dutch former model Faviola Dadis, told TheWrap they filed reports about Seagal with the LAPD in the last month. Dadis said he groped her during an audition in 2002.
The LAPD detective who Seagal and Dadis said they spoke to declined to comment, citing confidentiality. An LAPD spokeswoman said the department is investigating a separate case involving Seagal from 2005 but declined further comment.
Both Simons and Dadis told TheWrap that they shared their accounts with several other people years ago before going public, and those people corroborated the women’s accounts in interviews with TheWrap.
Numerous attempts to reach Seagal for comment on this story were unsuccessful. His son, actor and model Kentaro Seagal, told TheWrap he did not know how to reach his father.
A producer who recently worked with Seagal put TheWrap in touch with an attorney he said represented Seagal, but the lawyer did not respond to a lengthy description of the accusations, or to phone calls seeking comment.
‘On Deadly Ground’
Simons — now a 43-year-old mother of two — said she had just turned 18 when she met Seagal — then in his early 40s — during an open call for his movie “On Deadly Ground” in 1993. The year before, Seagal’s “Under Siege” had raked in more than $156 million, even earning two Oscar nominations for sound production.
When her brother heard she was going on an audition for a Seagal movie, he asked to tag along. Seagal was casting for Native Americans, and Simons, who is part Navajo and part Sioux, wore borrowed tribal regalia.
As they waited with hundreds of other hopefuls, Simons said, Seagal stopped, introduced himself, and invited her and her brother to join him on set.
Soon, they were sitting in Seagal’s trailer. She said her brother and Seagal did most of the talking: She was a shy girl from a conservative Mormon family. When she mentioned a minor headache, Seagal offered to give her a massage. She said he rubbed her hand and neck, which seemed odd, and then went to the set. (Her brother, Ben, corroborated her account of the day to TheWrap).
A few weeks after shooting her scene, Simons got a phone call: She was invited to his home for the wrap party. When she arrived, she said, no one but Seagal was home, and there was no sign of a celebration.
“I asked him where is everyone and he said that they had already left,” she said.
She said Seagal then took her into an adjacent room and raped her. She was so overwhelmed that she froze — though she cried through all of it, she said.
“The only way I’m able to describe it is I literally felt like I left my body,” Simons explained. “I think because of the situation I was completely caught off guard. Tears were coming down my face and I know that it hurt. He was three times my size.”
She couldn’t utter a word, she said.
“I was crying when he was on top of me,” she said. “Even now, my 43-year-old mind knows how to process this and understand what a loving relationship is and what consensual sex is. And there was none of that.”
When it was over, she said she quickly grabbed her clothes and made a “beeline” for the door.
“All I remember is him asking me if I needed any money,” she said. “I shook my head and ran towards my car. I cried the whole way home.”
She said she contemplated coming forward and sought advice from her Mormon bishop, but decided against it.
“I wasn’t even allowed to date so for me it was a shameful thing,” she said. “I was like, ‘Oh my God, how could this have happened?’ So, I blamed a lot of it on myself and tried to pretend it didn’t happen.”
The bishop corroborated her story, with Simons’ permission. He asked that his name not be used, but said he would be willing to come forward if necessary.
“She had done a lot of crying and I tried to comfort her as best I could,” he said.
Simons said Seagal kept calling her. “I just told the lady I was living with to not take his calls,” she said. “And he finally just stopped.”
That woman, Patricia Alaniz, said she remembered Seagal calling for several weeks. She said she warned Simons to be careful.
“His behavior, calling so often, it felt predatory to me,” Alaniz told TheWrap. “He was a middle-aged man, married at the time, and she was young and naive. I thought he was grooming her.”
Simons said the trauma soured her on acting. She moved home to Utah, then back to the Los Angeles area, where she now works as a case advocate for Native-American families.
She said she went to counseling for years and a therapist diagnosed her with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder in August. Her psychologist, who asked to remain anonymous, corroborated her account with Simons’ permission, saying she believed the incident with Seagal was the source of her trauma.
“For a first sexual encounter to be violent, it skews your views of the world, relationship and sex,” the therapist said. “It modified the trajectory of her life.”
The therapist also said her response — to freeze during a rape — is “unfortunately very common.”
Simons’ mother, ex-boyfriend and ex-husband also corroborated her story in interviews with TheWrap.
Betty Simons, Regina’s mother, said her daughter told her about the incident about a year after it happened.
“She was having these terrible migraines and she was stressed out and wasn’t excited about things,” she said. “Finally, she broke down and told me what happened.”
‘This Audition Is Over’
Last month, Dadis took to Instagram to accuse the actor of sexually assaulting her in 2002, saying that he fondled her breasts and grabbed her crotch during an audition for a part in an epic about Genghis Khan. The movie was never made.
She said she was invited to a “private audition” at the W Hotel in Beverly Hills where she was told to wear a bikini under her clothes so that Seagal and his team could evaluate her figure. She was promised that a production assistant and a casting director would be present.
But when she got to the hotel room, Seagal and his security guard were the only ones there.
Dadis said Seagal asked her to take off her clothes and walk through the room in her bikini. He then approached her and said he wanted to act out a “romantic scene.”
“I expressed that I was uncomfortable with that especially since I was in my bikini,” Dadis told TheWrap. “And then he started pinching my nipples and grabbing my crotch area with his other hand. I quickly yelled ‘This audition is over!'”
She said she tried to run out of the room but was blocked by Seagal’s security guard. “I began yelling: ‘I need to leave right now, this is B.S., I need to leave right now!’ He motioned to his security guard to let me go and I ran out.”
TheWrap spoke to Dadis’ mother and her ex-boyfriend, who corroborated her account. Her mother, Ute, said her daughter told her what happened about a week later.
Dadis is currently being represented by civil rights attorney Lisa Bloom.
Both Dadis and Simons share an agent, but said they did not discuss their accounts before deciding to come forward. They said their agent introduced them to each other after learning from each of them, separately, about their accounts.
He has been previously been accused of harassment and other misconduct by actresses Portia de Rossi, Julianna Margulies, Katherine Heigl, Eva LaRue, Rae Dawn Chong, Lisa Guerrero and Jenny McCarthy. (A rep for Seagal told The Daily Beast of McCarthy: “Her claim is completely false”).
Singer no longer represents Seagal.