Accusers of Ron Jeremy are disappointed that the former porn star, who was indicted on more than 30 counts of sexual assault, will not go to trial due to being declared unfit by a California judge.
Jeremy, whose legal name is Ronald Hyatt, was indicted on 34 counts of sexual assault stemming from allegations made by 20 women. In June 2020, he was first charged with raping four women he met in West Hollywood bars. After that, dozens of more women came forward with their own allegations, some of them dating back to the 1990s.
On Tuesday, however, the onetime porn king was declared unfit to stand trial by Superior Court Judge Ronald S. Harris, after mental health experts called on by both the prosecutors and Jeremy’s defense team concluded he suffers from severe dementia.
High-profile attorney Gloria Allred, who represents two of the “Jane Doe” accusers, told NPR the ruling was “very disturbing” to her clients.
“It is very distressing,” she said. “Both were ready to testify at the trial.”
Allred added that the alleged victims have had to relive their experiences with Ron Jeremy multiple times while preparing to face off against him in court, and now it may have all been for nothing.
“They have worked with law enforcement. They’ve testified before a grand jury,” Allred said. “They’ve had to explain, tell what happened to them over and over and over with the hope that one day they could achieve justice, and now the hope is dimming.”
Lianne Young, a former British porn star who accused Jeremy of sexually assaulting her, told the Los Angeles Times that her first reaction was “kind of numb.”
“They were aware of his condition before getting us all involved,” Young said. “They were well aware he had dementia, so I’m very disappointed that they didn’t solve that bit before letting us go on that emotional journey for two and a half years.”
A spokesperson for the district attorney’s office, however, told Los Angeles Times that prosecutors did not know of the severity of Jeremy’s condition at the time they hit him with charges.
Young also expressed concern that if if Jeremy is not convicted, he could be absolved in the eyes of his fans.
“It’s going to come down to public opinion now, and public opinion has looked at Ron like a god,” she said. “It could be an indication to other predators or viewers of pornography that they can get away with such crimes.”
As for what will happen to Jeremy now that he has been declared unfit to stand trial, an upcoming hearing will determine if he will be sent to a state-run hospital.