Is #MeToo moving into domestic violence?

As the power of #MeToo continues to evolve, one woman used it to voice allegations of physical abuse

Published December 8, 2017 12:12PM (EST)

Lucy McIntosh (Getty/Matt Winkelmeyer)
Lucy McIntosh (Getty/Matt Winkelmeyer)

Salon received the following statement from a representative for Mark Houston on June 12, 2018: With regard to the actions entitled Mark Houston v. Lucy Macintosh, Case No. 685909 and Lucy Macintosh v. Mark Houston, Case No. BC 685649, both parties have dismissed all litigation pursuits against each other, and neither party has paid the other party anything to resolve this litigation. As has been stated under oath, Lucy Macintosh affirms that Mark Houston was never an abusive boyfriend.

Australian model Lucy McIntosh accused nightclub entrepreneur Mark Houston of domestic violence through a post on her Instagram Wednesday. Using the hashtag #MeToo, McIntosh published a picture of her face bloodied and battered.

"Look at my face," the caption read. "My nose is broken and face is fractured. This is the face of someone who was assaulted by a boyfriend."

McIntosh added that she has met with a detective at the Los Angeles Police Department "to show her the damage caused by a physically and emotionally abusive boyfriend." Tagging Houston, she wrote that he "did this to me. I am naming his name. Because we can't stay silent. Women across the world to continue to rise up. #metoo."

Consequently, many users familiar with club culture in Los Angeles and beyond shared the image along with calls to boycott McIntosh's properties. 

San Fernando Valley Media reported that Houston sued McIntosh Wednesday for false claims of physical abuse, extortion, fraud, defamation, interference with prospective economic advantage and theft. He is seeking unspecified damages.

The suit says McIntosh has accused at least one other partner of sexual and physical abuse. The suit also claims that after McIntosh and Houston entered into a relationship in 2016, she lived in his home rent-free and he supported her living expenses.


"In September of this year, McIntosh sent Houston photos of her bloodied face, told him he had 'done this to her' and claimed she might have a broken nose, the suit states," SFV Entertainment reported. "The model sent the same photos to others and said Houston had 'sucker-punched' her, the suit states."

Houston is alleging that McIntosh demanded $657,900 through her attorney to keep silent. Houston says he paid approximately $9,000 for the injuries to her face, even though, the insists that he did not inflict those wounds.

In another high-profile instance of domestic violence allegations making headlines today, Amber Heard, ex-wife of Johnny Depp, seemed to subtlety point out the double standard in Hollywood for men accused of sexual misconduct versus physical violence. Last week Warners Bros. and the filmmakers behind the "Fantastic Beats" sequel, in which Depp stars, defended the decision by using a line from Heard and Depp's joint statement announcing their divorce settlement. "Fantastic Beasts" and "Harry Potter" writer J.K. Rowling has also voiced support for Depp despite a history of championing women's rights.

"For the record, this was our FULL joint statement.To pick&choose certain lines & quote them out of context, is not right.Women, stay strong," Heard posted to Twitter.

While so far, the #MeToo movement has been largely confined to men and women sharing experiences of sexual harassment and assault. Still, given the endemic nature of violence against women in many forms, it seems not only possible, but probable that #MeToo may continue to evolve and open up space for domestic violence victims as well. It apparently already has for McIntosh.

By Rachel Leah

MORE FROM Rachel Leah

Related Topics ------------------------------------------

Domestic Violence Hollywood J. K. Rowling Johnny Depp Lucy Mcintosh Mark Houston #metoo Physical Abuse