Image Source: Getty / Mark Von Holden
The 22-year-old woman identified as Jane Doe who accused Tiffany Haddish and comedian Aries Spears of child sex abuse last month has dropped her lawsuit against both stars, per multiple reports. On Sept. 20, Entertainment Weekly confirmed that the Jane Doe plaintiff asked a judge to dismiss the case with prejudice, therefore it cannot be refiled.
In a statement obtained by TMZ, the first to break the news, the plaintiff said, “My family and I have known Tiffany Haddish for many years – and we now know that she would never harm me or my brother or help anyone else do anything that could harm us. We wish Tiffany the best and are glad that we can all put this behind us.”
On Aug. 30, Jane Doe sued Haddish and Spears on behalf of herself and her younger brother, whom she’s the legal guardian of, identified as John Doe. In court documents related to a civil complaint filed at California’s Superior Court for Los Angeles County, POPSUGAR found that Jane Doe alleged that Haddish “groomed” the two plaintiffs and that both comedians assaulted them, which has left them “traumatized for life.”
Per the court documents, the case stated that “Haddish brought 14-year-old plaintiff Jane Doe to a Hollywood studio to film a sexually suggestive Subways commercial,” in which the comedian allegedly instructed her to eat a sandwich in a manner that simulated a sexual act. For a separate video, the court documents also claimed that John Doe was “groomed and molested” by Haddish and Spears, and filmed for a skit titled “Through a Pedophile’s Eyes” uploaded to Funny or Die’s online platform in 2014. The video wasn’t removed until May 2021.
On Sept. 5, Haddish issued a statement via Instagram addressing the allegations. “I know people have a bunch of questions. I get it. I’m right there with you,” she wrote. “Unfortunately, because there is an ongoing legal case, there’s very little that I can say right now. But clearly, while this sketch was intended to be comedic, it wasn’t funny at all — and I deeply regret having agreed to act in it. I really look forward to being able to share a lot more about this situation as soon as I can.”
Individual representatives for Haddish and Spears did not immediately respond to POPSUGAR’s request for comment about their lawsuit being dismissed, but the former’s attorney, Andrew Brettler, previously told CNN in a statement that Jane Doe’s mother had “been trying to assert these bogus claims against Ms. Haddish for several years.”
“Every attorney who has initially taken on her case — and there were several — ultimately dropped the matter once it became clear that the claims were meritless and Ms. Haddish would not be shaken down,” the statement continued, also adding that Jane Doe’s mother had “her adult daughter representing herself in this lawsuit. The two of them will together face the consequences of pursuing this frivolous action.” In a statement to NPR, Spears’s lawyer, Debra Opri, previously said her client would not “fall for any shakedown.”
Haddish nor Spears have yet to publicly comment on the dismissal of their case.