Two Women Accuse Neil deGrasse Tyson Of Inappropriate Sexual Behavior

Neil deGrasse Tyson arrives at the Creative Arts Emmy Awards at Microsoft Theater on September 10, 2016 in Los Angeles, California.
Photo by Emma McIntyre/Getty Images

On Thursday, two women publicly accused astrophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson of inappropriate sexual conduct. Their story was first published in an article by David G. McAfee for Patheos.

Dr. Katelyn N. Allers alleges that after a 2009 American Astronomical Society (AAS) event in Long Beach, California, she and a friend decided to take several photographs with deGrasse Tyson. After the photos were taken, deGrasse Tyson allegedly asked Allers about her tattoo of the solar system, part of which is exposed on her arm.

According to Allers, Tyson wanted to know if Pluto appeared in her tattoo. In his search for the dwarf planet, the astronomer "followed the tattoo into my dress," said Allers.

She told McAfee that, given her experience, deGrasse Tyson doesn’t seem like "someone who has great respect for female bodily autonomy."

Dr. Michele Thornley, a colleague of Allers at Bucknell University, confirmed to McAfee that in 2013, Allers had spoken with her about the alleged incident prior to an event at which deGrasse Tyson was to lecture.

Another woman alleging sexually inappropriate conduct is Ashley Watson, a former assistant to deGrasse Tyson.

Watson told McAfee that deGrasse Tyson displayed "predatory tendencies" during their working relationship. One night, according to Watson, deGrasse Tyson invited her over for wine. She reluctantly accepted, and over the course of the evening, deGrasse Tyson allegedly exhibited increasingly bizarre behavior.

McAfee writes:

Upon entering his apartment, Tyson allegedly took off his shoes and shirt, remaining in a tank top undershirt. Unfortunately, the night only got more awkward as Tyson, who is married, reportedly put on romantic music and replayed the most graphic parts.

She says Tyson soon brought out a cutting board and a knife to cut blocks of cheese that he decided they would share. But before slicing the snack, he allegedly gestured toward her with the knife and made a comment about stabbing.

According to Watson, deGrasse Tyson talked about "releases," and even asked about her personal needs. When Watson decided to leave, deGrasse Tyson apparently wanted to perform an intimate handshake in which each person feels the other’s pulse.

Watson claims that when she spoke with deGrasse Tyson about what happened, he dismissed her concerns with a misogynistic remark. She told a supervisor about the alleged incident, and later quit.

Allers and Watson’s claims of sexually inappropriate behavior come four years after a woman named Tchiya Amet claimed that deGrasse Tyson drugged and raped her when she was "grad student in Astronomy at UT Austin."

Watson reportedly sent a message to Amet, stating in part: "I feel like most people don’t believe he’s a predator because of his status as an educator..."

In light of the latest accusations against deGrasse Tyson, Fox and National Geographic, the networks behind the revival of "Cosmos," which is hosted by the accused, have begun an investigation.

In an official statement to Deadline, the producers of "Cosmos" said: "The credo at the heart of Cosmos is to follow the evidence wherever it leads. The producers of Cosmos can do no less in this situation. We are committed to a thorough investigation of this matter and to act accordingly as soon as it is concluded."

Both networks claim to be taking the allegations "very seriously."

The Daily Wire has reached out to Neil deGrasse Tyson for comment, but as of publication, we have not received a reply.

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