On Friday, we posted video from a deeply disturbing monologue by a man since confirmed to be Eric D. Angell. Now comedy institution The Second City, which employed him at the time of the story, says it's brought the issue to the attention of "proper authorities."
"RE: ASSScat Monologuist - Thank you for bringing to our attention. We are deeply concerned and have alerted the proper authorities," The Second City tweeted Friday. That's vague, but suggests they asked the police to see whether the sexual encounter Angell described having with a drunk female customer is prosecutable as rape, sexual assault, or a related crime. It's not clear what the path would be with law enforcement without a victim coming forward. We've left messages with Second City to try and find out exactly what's up.
Angell had been a cook at The Second City's Chicago theater at the time of the incident, which he described onstage at the Asssscat show at a New York City improv festival two weeks ago. As he told it, a very drunk customer had given her number to a waiter there, only to find Angell instead at her door and entering her room despite her repeated requests that he leave. His claim that she'd "pinned him down" and was stronger than him implied a physical confrontation that he didn't quite describe. He also claimed the woman had said before they had sex, "Please tell me you have a condom," which some saw as consent and others saw as akin to handing your wallet to a mugger rather than risk a violent confrontation.
We still haven't heard back from Angell, whom we contacted for comment Friday morning. That was before putting up the initial post, which did not name him; since then, several people have confirmed that he is the man in the video, including, implicitly, Second City, and his improv buddies in Las Vegas, where he now lives. Whoever runs their Facebook page also at first made the rather contradictory claim that they "love and appreciate Eric but were not affiliated with whatever transpired in NY." (Click to enlarge.) They were also apparently deleting comments asking them about it.
But then, this afternoon, they issued this statement:
Improv Vegas does not condone the actions of anyone who harms or takes advantage of another individual. A recent event involving a member of the Las Vegas Improv community is disturbing and is being taken seriously while we further look into the matter. Until August 26th, Improv Vegas was not aware of the actions of this individual while participating in an event in New York, nor was aware of or had seen the video of the monologue that transpired. Eric Angell, is not, nor ever has been, an employee of Improv Vegas and Mr. Angell will no longer be permitted to participate in our shows or classes. We take this matter seriously and want to protect and ensure the safety and enjoyment of our students and audience as well as the integrity of the Las Vegas improv community.
Angell appears to have either deleted his Facebook page or made it unsearchable, but one of the people who says he knows Angell has screenshots.
Update: Here is a not-very-informative statement from The Second City:
"The Second City is deeply disturbed about what transpired at the comedy marathon in New York City and we find absolutely zero humor in this story. We take this matter very seriously and attach the highest priority to the safety and welfare of our patrons. Toward that end, we reached out to the proper authorities and we pledge our complete and open cooperation, should they choose to investigate this matter further."