Cheer Stars Address Child Sexual Abuse Allegations Against Jerry Harris
Jerry Harris has been all over the headlines over the last week for his child pornography case. Earlier on Friday, Gabi Butler and La'Daurius Marshall shared statements not long after it was revealed that Jerry was charged with very serious sex crimes against minors.
On her Instagram on Friday, the 22-year-old Cheer star wrote that she was "shocked, dismayed, and deeply saddened" by the news surrounding her friend. Gabi says ever since she heard what happened, she has fluctuated between crying and trying to wrap her head around the news.
Butler went on to say that she never knew what Jerry was up to in his private life, and she emphasized the importance of protecting children which she described as "important as ever in today's world."
On the same day, Marshall, 22, wrote a comment on her Instagram in which she explained her own experiences as a sex abuse survivor. She went on to say that she knew "all too well the pain" of going through similar traumatic experiences.
As it was previously reported by multiple outlets, the police arrested Harris on child pornography charges on Thursday after he was accused of trying to have sex with minors.
USA Today was the first to report that Harris had been speaking with two 14-year-old twins on social media. Both young boys claimed to have been speaking with Harris via social media for over a year.
On Monday, the 14th of September, the FBI searched Harris ' home in Naperville, Illinois, and a spokesperson for Harris denied the allegations around the same time as his arrest. The representative claimed that the incidents in question must've occurred when he was a teenager.
On Friday, Jerry's cheerleading coach, Monica Aldama, spoke on the scandal via her Instagram. The 50-year-old Cheer star said her heart was "shattered into a million pieces." Monica went on to say that the public must protect children from sexual exploitation, no matter the perpetrator.
This wouldn't be the first time an entertainment industry figure was accused of having inappropriate relationships with minors. Mark Salling , formerly of Glee , killed himself after he was charged with possessing child pornography.