Comedian Tom Ballard has strongly denied indecent assault allegations levelled at him by an up-and-coming comedian in a statement on his website.
On Saturday, Fairfax reported the four-year-old allegation was detailed on Facebook, with the man writing police could not investigate the claim because Ballard “hadn’t gone outside of the confines of the law”.
Ballard, the host of ABC’s Tonightly and a former Triple J Breakfast host, said addressing the allegation was “extremely difficult” to do.
“Over the past six months I have become aware of a claim being made about me. It involves an allegation of sexual assault: an allegation that I completely deny in the strongest terms possible. It fundamentally goes against who I am as a person and everything I believe in. Today that claim was aired publicly,” he wrote.
“Four years ago I had a consensual sexual experience with someone. I had absolutely no idea he believed it wasn’t consensual until six months ago. His version of that experience as described on social media is simply not what happened.”
Ballard went on to say the “false claim” has been “deeply distressing” for he and his family, and has “affected [his] work and mental health”.
“I abhor sexual assault and sexual violence. I absolutely support the philosophy of the #MeToo movement: I believe in supporting victims and ensuring those who have done wrong face justice. But I have not done anything wrong. Any suggestion otherwise is false, deeply distressing and unhelpful.”
In a statement to Fairfax, the ABC said they were aware of the claim.