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Ren & Stimpy creator John Kricfalusi accused of statutory rape, harassment, and owning child porn

The cartoonist who created The Ren & Stimpy Show had sex with an underage teen who was living with him for years, possessed child pornography, and regularly hit on and harassed young girls, two women have alleged.

John Kricfalusi, the Canadian animator, is the subject of a lengthy expose by BuzzFeed News, which quoted two women who say he approached them when they were still in high school and formed relationships with them.

One of them Robyn Byrd, said she first started talking to Kricfalusi in 1994. She was just 13 years old.

Byrd, an aspiring animator, had sent Kricfalusi a video of herself talking about her drawings and her wish to be a cartoonist.

She had hoped to one day be hired by Nickelodeon, the popular cable channel that aired Ren & Stimpy.

To her joy, Kricfalusi, who was 39 years old at the time, replied to her.

He would send her boxes of toys and art supplies as gifts. He also began to communicate with her through the internet.

John Kricfalusi, the cartoonist who created The Ren & Stimpy Show, had sex with an underage teen who was living with him for years, possessed child pornography, and regularly hit on and harassed young girls, two women have alleged

Eventually, Kricfalusi traveled to her trailer park home in Tucson, Arizona to visit her.

‘I thought I was still his little cute friend,’ she said.

During the visit, Byrd, who was a high school junior, said that the two had sex for the first time in a nearby hotel.

After their encounter, Byrd would maintain her relationship with Kricfalusi, believing that he was the key to starting a career in animation when she finished her school.

Kricfalusi even agreed to pay for her tuition so that she could attend a private school in Arizona for her senior year of high school.

When Byrd, who is now 37, was in 11th grade, Kricfalusi flew her to Los Angeles, where he showed her around his studio and home.

During that trip, Byrd, who was 16 at the time, alleges that Kricfalusi touched her genitals while she was clothed as they were standing near his pool.

That next summer, Byrd was once again flow to LA by Kricfalusi, who hired her as an intern at Spumco, his studio.

She also moved in with him as his girlfriend – even though the legal age of consent in California is 18.

‘I made my dream come true,’ Byrd said of her internship at Spumco.

‘That’s why I sent the tape when I was 13.’

Robyn Byrd and Katie Rice say they reached out to Kricfalusi when they were just starting high school because they wanted to work in the animation business

Robyn Byrd and Katie Rice say they reached out to Kricfalusi when they were just starting high school because they wanted to work in the animation business

That next year, after she finished high school, Byrd moved in with Kricfalusi permanently.

Byrd said that her relationship with Kricfalusi was an open secret.

At the time, she thought the arrangement was exciting.

‘I believed, as a 16-year-old dating him, “Oh, the world’s against us. It shouldn’t be wrong for him to date me. We’re cool and rebellious because we’re breaking the rules of society”,’ Byrd said.

Initially, the workers at Kricfalusi’s studio didn’t seem to be bothered by the relationship.

But disturbing signs began to emerge in the eyes of co-workers.

Tony Mora, an art director who worked with Byrd at Spumco, recalled that sometime in the late 90s, he went to a party at Kricfalusi’s home.

At the party, Mora told BuzzFeed he saw Byrd, who was no older than 20, ‘drunk’ and ‘drifting in and out of consciousness.’

Mora said that at the same party, Kricfalusi showed him a number of pictures.

‘And then he pulled out these Polaroids of Robyn basically – how can you say it? – going down on him,’ Mora said.

‘He’s like, “What do you think of that?”’

Derrick Wyatt, an artist who also worked at Spumco beginning in 1999, recalled a similar incident.

He said that during a party at Kricfalusi’s house at around the same time, he pulled out ‘a stack of Polaroids’ showing his boss having sex with Byrd.

Gabe Swarr, a producer at Warner Bros. who worked alongside Byrd at Spumco, told BuzzFeed he also was shown photographs of Byrd swimming naked in Kricfalusi’s pool.

Kricfalusi admits to once having a '16-year-old girlfriend' though his lawyer denied accusations he possessed child pornography

Kricfalusi admits to once having a ’16-year-old girlfriend’ though his lawyer denied accusations he possessed child pornography

‘It was gross,’ Swarr said.

‘He was like, “Oh, you like that?” I was like, “No!”’

Eventually, the relationship ended and Byrd left Spumco. She also changed careers as a result of her break-up with Kricfalusi.

As the relationship with Byrd was ending, Kricfalusi hired Katie Rice, who was 18 years old at the time.

Kricfalusi and Rice first struck up a relationship through America Online when she was just 14 years old.

Rice said her chats on the phone and online with someone she admired made her feel special.

Although Rice says she and Kricfalusi never had any physical contact, those emails and chats contained explicit content.

‘I want [sic] to squeeze you,’ Kricfalusi allegedly wrote to Rice.

‘I’m crazy about you, Katie.’

In another exchange, Kricfalusi allegedly wrote: ‘Do I ever made you tingle?’

Just a few days after her 15th birthday, Kricfalusi wrote to Rice: ‘I’m thinking about you very hard right now. And I have a little tickle in my chest.’

Rice said she printed and saved the messages.

Sometime between December 1995 and March 1996, Rice wrote in her diary: ‘I think this 40 year old man is hitting on me.’

‘But he’s never perverted. He is also very nice. He gives me a lot of drawing tips.’

BuzzFeed reported that a friend spoke to Rice at the time and remembered the diary entries.

After Rice and Kricfalusi met a few times in Los Angeles, they kept in touch when her family moved from California to Lake Tahoe, Nevada in 1996.

She was just 14 years old at the time and was entering 10th grade.

Rice said that she and Kricfalusi would speak on the phone late at night.

During one conversation, he allegedly told her: ‘Repeat after me: John’s d**k slides in my p***y.’

It was during that same conversation that Rice alleges Kricfalusi was masturbating on the other end of the line.

Rice said she refused to repeat the sentence.

She said that at the time she did not realize what he was doing. It was only in later years did it become apparent that he was masturbating, Rice told BuzzFeed.

Rice said that she went to work for Kricfalusi at Spumco on and off between age 18 and 25.

She alleges that during her tenure at Spumco she was routinely harassed by Kricfalusi.

Rice alleges he told her she was pretty and that he wished they could cuddle.

She once told Byrd, whom she met through AOL through Kricfalusi: ‘[He] was doing all sorts of bizarre stuff – waiting naked in his living room for when I let myself into his house to work in the morning, walking around with his weiner hanging out of his pants, telling me that his friend’s advice to “get” me was to just rape me one day.”’

Rice and Byrd told BuzzFeed they decided to go public with allegations after the police said the alleged crimes were too old to investigate

Rice and Byrd told BuzzFeed they decided to go public with allegations after the police said the alleged crimes were too old to investigate

Kricfalusi’s attorney denied the accusations. He said the rape comment was a joke.

Rice said that she stayed at Spumco because she had no other job prospects. She also said that at the time she had low self-esteem and that she believed Kricfalusi when he told her she was ‘special.’

Rice said she finally decided to leave when she found child pornography on his computer.

One haunting photo she remembers allegedly showed a girl who appeared about 10 years old lying on her back naked with her legs spread.

Rice said that the girl had a ‘fearful’ expression on her face.

An ex-girlfriend of Kricfalusi who remained anonymous told BuzzFeed that she, too, saw pictures of naked girls between the ages of 12 and 14 on his computer sometime around 2007.

Byrd told BuzzFeed News she went on the record after police told her in December that Kricfalusi’s alleged crimes were too old to investigate.

‘He shouldn’t be able to get away with that,’ she said.

Rice said she also attempted to contact authorities, but when they told her nothing could be done due to the statute of limitations, she went public.

An attorney for Kricfalusi released a statement to BuzzFeed, saying: ‘The 1990s were a time of mental and emotional fragility for Mr. Kricfalusi, especially after losing Ren and Stimpy, his most prized creation.

‘For a brief time, 25 years ago, he had a 16-year-old girlfriend.

‘Over the years John struggled with what were eventually diagnosed mental illnesses in 2008.

‘To that point, for nearly three decades he had relied primarily on alcohol to self-medicate.

‘Since that time he has worked feverishly on his mental health issues, and has been successful in stabilizing his life over the last decade.

‘This achievement has allowed John the opportunity to grow and mature in ways he’d never had a chance at before.’ 

The attorney also denied that his client possessed child pornography.

‘I assure you that there are significant differences between your outline and what actually happened and when,’ the attorney told BuzzFeed.

The lawyer said that police have never contacted him regarding an investigation. 

Nickelodeon declined to comment.

The Paramount Network was formerly known as SpikeTV, the channel that aired the Ren & Stimpy reboot Adult Party Cartoon.

TPN told BuzzFeed that it never received a report accusing Kricfalusi of sexual harassment.

The network said it has ‘specific policies and procedures to ensure our employees feel empowered to report inappropriate behavior.’

The Cartoon Network and Adult Swim, two television entities that hired Kricfalusi in years past for various projects, also said they were not aware of any complaints alleging sexual impropriety.

Both networks said they would never work with Kricfalusi again. 



Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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