The Most Infamous Celebrity Sex Scandals In History
by Maggie Dickman
Raunchy controversies seem to always have a way of making headlines, but there are a handful of celebrities whose misconduct has drawn more attention than others. Here are a few of the biggest sex scandals to hit Hollywood, the political sphere, and more.
Former Democratic Congressman Anthony Weiner is back in the spotlight after the married father-of-one’s previous bad behavior on Twitter, with new claims that he’d been sending sexually explicit messages and photos with a 15-year-old girl. Back in 2011, he denied––and then admitted––to sending inappropriate photos to women via social media. A few years later during his 2013 campaign for mayor of New York City, he found himself in hot water yet again for sending inappropriate messages to women under the name “Carlos Danger.”
Jennifer Aniston, Brad Pitt and Angelina Jolie
Though Angelina Jolie and Brad Pitt recently called it quits on their marriage in September 2016, rumor has it their relationship began in murky waters itself. Pitt was previously married to Jennifer Aniston, and the two filed for divorce in 2005 after five years of marriage––right as Pitt and Angelina Jolie were filming their movie Mr. and Mrs. Smith. Though Pitt maintained that he was faithful to Aniston throughout their marriage, he was spotted out with Jolie during his divorce proceedings, setting off widespread speculation that their relationship had begun before his marriage with Aniston ended. The high profile split, and the even higher profile relationship that quickly bloomed between Pitt and Jolie, rocked headlines.
Kim Kardashian and Ray J
A few years after Kim K’s three-year relationship with singer Ray J ended, the two’s sex tape was leaked and sold for $1 million. “This tape, which was made three years ago, and was meant to be something private between myself and my then-boyfriend is extremely hurtful not only to me, but to my family as well,” Kardashian said in a statement on the sex scandal to People.
Jennifer Garner and Ben Affleck
America’s sweethearts Jennifer Garner and Ben Affleck announced back in 2015 that they would be divorcing after 10 years of marriage. A month after their split was announced, there were reports that Affleck was caught cheating with the kids’ nanny, 28-year-old Christine Ouzounian. Though the two are no longer together, the parents of three have been spotted out and about together in an effort to maintain a stable lifestyle for their kids.
During Schwarzenegger’s election for governor of California, news was leaked that he engaged in sexually inappropriate conduct with a number of women, including the family’s longtime housekeeper, Mildred Patricia Baena, with whom Schwarzenegger had a child. Schwarzenegger sent Baena money under the table for her and her son, and he denied the affair and child until Shriver confronted him on the sex scandal a few months before she filed for divorce.
Before the pop star’s death in 2009, Michael Jackson had been implicated in a string of sexual abuse cases, and was eventually acquitted in 2005 in a case brought by a boy who had spent time at Jackson’s Neverland ranch and appeared with him in the documentary Living With Michael Jackson. According to ABC News, the 2003 film sparked the events that ultimately led to a police raid on Jackson’s home, his arrest and subsequent trial. Most recently, choreographer Wade Robson made claims against Jackson, telling The New York Daily News that “MJJ Productions operated the most sophisticated child sexual abuse procurement and facilitation operation the world has known.”
Sandra Bullock and Jesse James
In March 2010, reports leaked that Jesse James was having an affair with Michelle “Bombshell” McGee, a model who claims to have had an 11-month affair with James. By the end of the month, five women had come forward claiming a connection to James. By April, Bullock had filed for divorce, and James had checked himself into rehab for “personal issues.”
Kristen Stewart and Robert Pattinson
After dating Robert Pattinson for four years, Kristen Stewart was photographed kissing her married Snow White and the Huntsman director Rupert Sanders. After photos surfaced, she issued a public apology for the “hurt and embarrassment” she caused. The couple has since broken up, but Pattinson has said that cheating was not behind their split.
After Woody Allen’s highly publicized relationship––then marriage––to Soon Yi-Previn, adopted daughter of his previous partner Mia Farrow, Allen has found himself in a firestorm once again. Farrow’s daughter Dylan Farrow claims that Allen had molested her as a 7-year-old girl in her home. This made headlines this past spring at the Cannes Film Festival, where industry leaders like Susan Sarandon refused to see Allen’s new film with his looming sexual assault allegations.
After reports of a domestic dispute back in 2009, it was released that Tiger Woods had cheated on then-wife Elin Nordegren, with around 14 women who have stepped forward claiming to have had relations with Woods. Woods followed the scandal with an “indefinite hiatus” from professional golf after admitting and apologizing for his infidelity.
Before his career as a talk show host, Jerry Springer was found guilty of using a prostitute service while serving on Cincinnati’s City Council in 1974. He was discovered after a raid on a Fort Wright, Kentucky brothel, where police found one of his personal checks paying for the service.
Back in 2009, David Letterman stepped forward after allegations surfaced that he had affairs with female staffers at the Late Show. His case was even more involved than most, with CBS News producer Robert Halderman being accused of blackmail, requesting $2 million in exchange for keeping quiet about Letterman’s affairs.
R&B singer R. Kelly has been accused by multiple women of having sexual relationships with minors and creating child pornography. He has been linked to multiple underage women throughout the years, including the late Aaliyah, and was caught falsifying a marriage certificate to wed the 15-year-old when he was 27 at the time. In an in-depth interview with the troubled star earlier in 2016, GQ speculates that the marriage was later formally annulled. Kelly was also linked to a domestic dispute in 2005, after his wife was granted an emergency protective order against the star.