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Theater staff were warned that George HW Bush is ‘handsy’

A second actress claimed former President George H.W. Bush touched her butt, and now an eyewitness to that alleged incident says theater staffers were warned he ‘gets handsy.’

Emma Sohlberg, 24, was part of the ensemble cast for the 2016 performance of the ‘Hunchback of Notre Dame’ at the Ogunquit Playhouse in Maine, where fellow cast member Jordana Grolnick claimed her rear was grabbed by Bush.

Sohlberg speaking to Huffington Post says staffers at the playhouse frequented by Bush would ‘always complain that he’s kinda creepy.’ 

‘They warned us, he gets pretty handsy,’ she said, adding that ‘everybody in the room nervously laughed’ after Bush ‘grabbed [Grolnick’s] a**.’

New York actress Jordana Grolnick (second left) is the second woman to come forward claiming former President George H.W. Bush touched her butt during this 2016 photo shoot. The photo shows her standing next to Bush, whose hand appears to be near her butt (circled) Farthest to the left Emma Sohlberg, who says theatre staff were warned about Bush’s alleged behavior

Grolnick (above) said: 'It wasn't ok for him to do that to me'

Emma Sohlberg

Grolnick (left) made the second of such claims against the former president this week. Emma Sohlberg (right) was in the photo-op with the former president and says they were warned Bush can ‘get handsy’ 

‘It was a classic case of not gonna say anything because he’s literally a president,’ she said, noting that ‘Barbara was very aware of it and said something like, ‘Oh keep your hands where I can see ’em George.’

The alleged incident with Grolnick happened during a 2016 photo op with the President while she was working on the Hunchback of Notre Dame production.

Grolnich says Bush made a joke about his favorite magician being ‘David Cop-a-Feel.’ 

‘We all circled around him and Barbara for a photo, and I was right next to him,’ Grolnick told Deadspin on Wednesday. 

The Bush's would frequent the Ogunquit Playhouse (pictured) in Maine, and the former president allegedly had a reputation for being 'creepy'

The Bush’s would frequent the Ogunquit Playhouse (pictured) in Maine, and the former president allegedly had a reputation for being ‘creepy’

She wrote: 'George H.W. Bush has a favorite magician. It's "David Cop-A-Feel." He told us so. Barbara has no opinion on magicians. #history'.

She wrote: ‘George H.W. Bush has a favorite magician. It’s ‘David Cop-A-Feel.’ He told us so. Barbara has no opinion on magicians. #history’.

‘He reached his right hand around to my behind, and as we smiled for the photo he asked the group, ‘Do you want to know who my favorite magician is?”

‘As I felt his hand dig into my flesh, he said, ‘David Cop-a-Feel!”

She said that others in the room ‘laughed politely and out of discomfort,’ and that former first lady Barbara Bush ‘said something along the lines of, ‘He’s going to get himself put into jail!”  

Grolnick said, ‘I just thought, ‘Whatever. He’s a dirty old man.”

The actress posted a photo to her Instagram page showing her standing next to Bush, whose hand appears to be near her butt. 

She wrote: ‘George H.W. Bush has a favorite magician. It’s ‘David Cop-A-Feel.’ He told us so. Barbara has no opinion on magicians. #history.’ 

Bush spokesperson Jim McGrath responded to the claims made by Lind and Grolnick (above) with a statement that reads: '...The president routinely tells the same joke — and on occasion, he has patted women's rears in what he intended to be a good-natured manner.'

Bush spokesperson Jim McGrath responded to the claims made by Lind and Grolnick (above) with a statement that reads: ‘…The president routinely tells the same joke — and on occasion, he has patted women’s rears in what he intended to be a good-natured manner.’

But in reflecting on the incident, she offered advice to others: ‘What I’ve come to realize is that if we tolerate these small comments and grazes from men on the street or former presidents, they might assume that it’s ok with us, and they may take it as permission to do who-knows-what else.’

‘I realize that making light of the situation was the wrong move. It wasn’t ok for him to do that to me,’ she added. 

Bush spokesperson Jim McGrath responded with a statement that reads: ‘At age 93, President Bush has been confined to a wheelchair for roughly five years, so his arm falls on the lower waist of people with whom he takes pictures.

Actress Heather Lind (above) is the first woman to come forward claiming the former president inappropriately touched her. She first took to Instagram to make the allegations against Bush

Actress Heather Lind (above) is the first woman to come forward claiming the former president inappropriately touched her. She first took to Instagram to make the allegations against Bush

‘To try to put people at ease, the president routinely tells the same joke — and on occasion, he has patted women’s rears in what he intended to be a good-natured manner. 

‘Some have seen it as innocent; others clearly view it as inappropriate. To anyone he has offended, President Bush apologizes most sincerely.’

Grolnick, is the second woman to come forward after Heather Lind claimed on Tuesday that Bush groped her in a similar manner during a 2014 photo shoot. 

Lind starred in AMC’s series ‘Turn: Washington’s Spies’, alleged on social media on Tuesday that the 93-year-old former president had grabbed her from behind during the photo shoot at a private screening of the series premiere in March 2014.

Her costar Kevin McNally, who was stood next to Lind in the photograph says he can confirm her claims.

‘My full support for @heatherglind for speaking out about the horrible event in Houston. All of which is true,’ tweeted the Pirates of the Caribbean star on Wednesday.

George H.W. Bush's office  apologized for a second time after being accused of touching  Lind from behind during this photo for AMC's TURN: Washington's Spies series premiere in March 2014 in Houston, Texas. Back row, L-R: actors Seth Numrich, Samuel Roukin, Ian Kahn, Heather Lind,  Kevin McNally and  Burn Gorman. Front row: Barbara Bush and George H.W. Bush

George H.W. Bush’s office apologized for a second time after being accused of touching Lind from behind during this photo for AMC’s TURN: Washington’s Spies series premiere in March 2014 in Houston, Texas. Back row, L-R: actors Seth Numrich, Samuel Roukin, Ian Kahn, Heather Lind, Kevin McNally and Burn Gorman. Front row: Barbara Bush and George H.W. Bush

Actor Burn Gorman‏, who was stood next to McNally in the photograph, added his ‘love and support’ to the actress, adding: ‘Grit and grace as ever from one of the best actors I’ve ever worked with.’

Alexander Rose, author of Washington Spies, added on Twitter that he had also attended the event and had witnessed the assault.

‘Her account is 100% accurate. I was there. It was not a ‘joke’ gone awry,’ he tweeted.

The photo features the Bushes and half a dozen Turn stars, with Lind standing just behind the former president. Standing alongside them were actors Seth Numrich, Samuel Roukin, Ian Kahn, McNally and Burn Gorman.

DailyMail.com has reached out to all the actors in that photograph with Lind.

Bush had apologized first to Lind for the alleged sexual assault on Tuesday.

In a statement to the DailyMail.com, his representatives said: ‘President Bush would never – under any circumstance – intentionally cause anyone distress, and he most sincerely apologizes if his attempt at humor offended Ms. Lind.’ 

Lind had made the allegations against the former president on Instagram in the now deleted lengthy post with accompanying photos. 

‘When I got the chance to meet George H. W. Bush four years ago to promote a historical television show I was working on, he sexually assaulted me while I was posing for a similar photo. He didn’t shake my hand. He touched me from behind from his wheelchair with his wife Barbara Bush by his side. He told me a dirty joke,’ Lind alleges.’ 

Lind's costar Kevin McNally, who was stood next to Hind in the photograph, tweeted his 'full support for @heatherglind for speaking out about the horrible event in Houston. All of which is true'

Lind’s costar Kevin McNally, who was stood next to Hind in the photograph, tweeted his ‘full support for @heatherglind for speaking out about the horrible event in Houston. All of which is true’

Alexander Rose, author of Washington Spies, added on Twitter that he had also attended the event and had witnesses the assault

Alexander Rose, author of Washington Spies, added on Twitter that he had also attended the event and had witnesses the assault

Actor Burn Gorman‏, who was stood next to McNally in the photograph, added his 'love and support' to the actress

Actor Burn Gorman‏, who was stood next to McNally in the photograph, added his ‘love and support’ to the actress

Lind said in her since-deleted Instagram post it happened a second time: ‘And then, all the while being photographed, touched me again. Barbara rolled her eyes as if to say ”not again”. His security guard told me I shouldn’t have stood next to him for the photo.’ 

‘We were instructed to call him Mr. President. It seems to me a President’s power is in his or her capacity to enact positive change, actually help people, and serve as a symbol of our democracy,’ the lengthy post went on.

‘He relinquished that power when he used it against me and, judging from the comments of those around him, countless other women before me,’ Lind wrote.

Her post goes on to say: ‘What comforts me is that I too can use my power, which isn’t so different from a President really. I can enact positive change. I can actually help people. I can be a symbol of my democracy.’

‘I can refuse to call him President, and call out other abuses of power when I see them,’ she writes.  

‘I can vote for a President, in part, by the nature of his or her character, knowing that his or her political decisions must necessarily stem from that character.’

Lind adds that she shared the allegations against Bush with people on her AMC series.

‘My fellow cast-mates and producers helped me that day and continue to support me. I am grateful for the bravery of other women who have spoken up and written about their experiences,’ she said.

‘And I thank President Barack Obama for the gesture of respect he made toward George H. W. Bush for the sake of our country, but I do not respect him. #metoo.’  

Lind concluded using the hashtag that has become a viral trend for people to share their allegations of sexual assault.  

People were divided on how to interpret Lind coming forward with her own #metoo story. 

One person commented: ‘I am SO SORRY that you had to deal with that Heather! This story has really upset me.’

But others were questioning the timing, ignoring the recent #metoo trend: ‘Why didn’t you say this four years ago instead of now.’ 

Heather Lind’s claims against George Bush Sr. 

I was disturbed today by a photo I saw of President Barack Obama shaking hands with George H. W. Bush in a gathering of ex-presidents organizing aid to states and territories damaged by recent hurricanes. I found it disturbing because I recognize the respect ex-presidents are given for having served. And I feel pride and reverence toward many of the men in the photo. But when I got the chance to meet George H. W. Bush four years ago to promote a historical television show I was working on, he sexually assaulted me while I was posing for a similar photo. He didn’t shake my hand. He touched me from behind from his wheelchair with his wife Barbara Bush by his side. He told me a dirty joke. And then, all the while being photographed, touched me again. Barbara rolled her eyes as if to say ‘not again’. His security guard told me I shouldn’t have stood next to him for the photo. We were instructed to call him Mr. President. It seems to me a President’s power is in his or her capacity to enact positive change, actually help people, and serve as a symbol of our democracy. He relinquished that power when he used it against me and, judging from the comments of those around him, countless other women before me. What comforts me is that I too can use my power, which isn’t so different from a President really. I can enact positive change. I can actually help people. I can be a symbol of my democracy. I can refuse to call him President, and call out other abuses of power when I see them. I can vote for a President, in part, by the nature of his or her character, knowing that his or her political decisions must necessarily stem from that character. My fellow cast-mates and producers helped me that day and continue to support me. I am grateful for the bravery of other women who have spoken up and written about their experiences. And I thank President Barack Obama for the gesture of respect he made toward George H. W. Bush for the sake of our country, but I do not respect him. #metoo 

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk


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