Chris Hardwick's Ex-Girlfriend Jacinda Barrett Defends Him Amid Abuse Allegations

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Jacinda Barrett arrives at the amfAR Gala Cannes 2018 at Hotel du Cap-Eden-Roc on May 17, 2018 in Cap d'Antibes, France.
Danielle Venturelli/amfAR/Getty Images for amfAR

Actress Jacinda Barrett is publicly supporting ex-boyfriend Chris Hardwick, after the TV host was accused earlier this month of emotional and physical abuse by actress Chloe Dykstra, whom he dated from 2011 to 2014.

Although Hardwick has vehemently denied the allegations, both Hardwick's AMC show, Talking With Chris Hardwick, and his San Diego Comic-Con appearance scheduled for next month were put on hold. 

Barrett, 45, dated Hardwick in the '90s, and the two were once engaged. She is now married to Suits star Gabriel Macht, while Hardwick is married to actress Lydia Hearst. Barrett defended Hardwick on Instagram on Monday, posting a note reading, "Imagine you are in a courtroom. A person walks in and in their own words reads a statement accusing you of wrongdoing. The punishment for this crime is to lose your livelihood, legacy, reputation and to be publicly shamed. Without examination of evidence, without due course the judge turns to everyone there and says what do you think? Guilty?"

In the accompanying caption, Barrett tagged 46-year-old Hardwick, and said her four-year relationship with him "bears no resemblance" to the one described by Dykstra. She also said Hardwick deserves to be heard, and cautioned against a rush to judgment.

"This past week I have watched someone I once loved and shared four years of my life with be publicly accused of misconduct and abuse, then swiftly fired and shunned," Barrett wrote. "The accuser’s story bears no resemblance to the one I shared with him all those years ago, but what is of supreme importance here is that every woman and every man deserves a voice. Accuser and Accused. Everyone deserves to be heard. A rush to judgement denies the right to due process; the Metoo movement deserves due process. #metoomovement #dueprocess #chrishardwick @hardwick."

Earlier this month, 29-year-old Dykstra claimed she was a victim of emotional and physical abuse by an ex-boyfriend in a first-person essay that went viral, titled "Rose-Colored Glasses: A Confession." Dykstra did not name her alleged abuser, but did write that he was 20 years older than her and sober, which led many to believe she was speaking about Hardwick.

In the article, she alleges that her nights "were expected to be reserved for him, as he had a busy schedule," and that she was not allowed to speak in public, take a photo of them together, drink alcohol or have "close male friends," which left her "alienated."

"[I was] terrified to piss him off, so I did what he said. Including let him sexually assault me. Regularly," she claimed. "I was expected to be ready for him when he came home from work. ... Every night, I laid there for him, occasionally in tears. He called it 'starfishing.' He thought the whole idea was funny."

Hardwick responded in a statement to Deadline.

"These are very serious allegations and not to be taken lightly which is why I’ve taken the day to consider how to respond. I was heartbroken to read Chloe's post," Hardwick said. "Our three-year relationship was not perfect -- we were ultimately not a good match and argued -- even shouted at each other -- but I loved her, and did my best to uplift and support her as a partner and companion in any way and at no time did I sexually assault her. ... I'm devastated to read that she is now accusing me of conduct that did not occur. I was blindsided by her post and always wanted the best for her. As a husband, a son, and future father, I do not condone any kind of mistreatment of women."

His wife also supported him in a statement to ET last week.

“I have made the decision to come out in support of my husband not out of obligation, but out of necessity to speak the truth about the person I know," Hearst's statement reads, in part. "Chris is nothing but loving and compassionate and is the only person who has stood by me, never judged me, helped me heal, and feel whole. To defend my husband would be giving credence to any of these accusations. I will not do that."

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