Singer Melanie Martinez, who gained fame from competing on season three of The Voice, has been accused of sexual assault by friend Timothy Heller.


Heller, who herself is an aspiring musician, detailed an incident in a four-part tweet in which she claims to have “repeatedly said no” to Martinez’ advances. She accuses Martinez of forceful penetration with sex toys, among other things. “When I wrote this story about my assault, I initially wasn’t going to make the abuser. But I think it’s important for you all to know this is about Melanie Martinez,” Heller wrote alongside an essay.

“The thought of accepting that my best friend raped me seems insane,” she began. “Her power and control over me grew and grew. And I was silenced. While being open about realizing how much help I needed, I was made to feel guilty… Yet through it all, I loved her. Codependency works in a lot of strange ways.” The first bit of her words explain the relationship the pair had – they were friends, but Martinez took advantage of that friendship.

She then details an evening in which Martinez “became increasingly interested in my sexual preferences.” She asked her questions and eventually asked Heller if she could have sex with her. “I repeatedly said no. I had work in the morning. I just wanted to sleep. I was exhausted,” she said. The next night the same thing happened. “I said every form of no I could think of.”

Martinez then began touching her arm, and then her breasts, and eventually performed sex acts on Heller, including oral sex and penetration with a sex toy. “I never said yes. I said no, repeatedly. But she used her power over me, and broke me down,” Heller writes. “Just so there is no confusion, I was molested by my best friend. I lay still, in shock, completely not reciprocating.”

Heller uses the end of her essay to say she has to constantly remind herself that what happened was not her fault. “We never talked about this night ever again. While it completely messed with my head, there was no way I could have been RAPED by my best friend…right?” she said. “If you begin to doubt the abuse taking place in this story, I beg you to imagine her role in this being a man. Girls can rape girls. Best friends can rape best friends. Friendship does not equal consent. Silence doesn’t equal consent. I wish it wasn’t so hard for me to convince myself of these things.”

Martinez has responded in a brief statement on Twitter, and did not offer an apology. “I am horrified and saddened by the statements and story told tonight by Timothy Heller,” she began. “What she and I shared was a close friendship for a period of time. We came into each other’s lives as we were both starting out careers as artists, and we tried to help each other. We both had pain in dealing with our individual demons and the new paths we were forging, but I truly felt we were trying to life each other up. She never said no to what we chose to do together. And although we parted ways, I am sending her love and light always.”

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