The fighting game community has been pressed to keep its members safe in the current social climate. The community is rocked by several allegations against Street Fighter Pro, Leah ‘Gllty’ Hayes, for “unwanted, inappropriate physical contact” with past attendees.
The initial allegations began with Super Smash Ultimate player Davon “Promaelia” Crawley tweeted out their experience on Twitter. Crawley admits to two different occasions “the personal boundaries of two adults through uninvited sexual contact” while inebriated.
“There was never any retribution, but sexual assault doesn’t just vanish from people’s minds,” Crawley wrote. “Especially from the minds of the people who see me every week, who knew that every month something new popped up on the timeline while I remained unaffected – it could only go unaddressed for so long.”
Crawley announced that he will be starting a program for alcohol and behavioral therapy, though he admits: “This in no way will make up for anything, I know. Yet continuing to do nothing will do no one any good.”
This confession leads to another professional player, Dawn “Yohosie” Hosie, a Dragon Ball FighterZ pro, to also came forth with more allegations.
Will publically say that gllty touched me inappropriately and publically during CEO2015. Have heard warnings from other women since. Burned the incident from my memory until she tried to get ahead of the controversy and apologize, and then I remembered the event — Very Cool
— Yohosie @ work (@yohosiefgc) August 13, 2019
Hayes followed up on the current events with her responses on Twitter.
“There’s a lot going on with regards to safety and comfort in event spaces,” Hayes wrote in a Tweet. “I’ve received a lot of harassment but I’ve also contributed to the toxic environment in my own ways. I’m sorry both to those who believed in me and also those I’ve affected negatively, or made them not want to return to events.”
I’ve flirted with a lot of women, and in more than once instance I’ve made them feel uncomfortable. I’ve made mistakes with boundaries, and I’m aware I’ve hurt people.
There’s a lot going on with regards to safety and comfort in event spaces. I’ve received a lot of harassment–
— GRPT|gllty (ギル姐) (@gllty) August 12, 2019
Combo Breaker announced in a tweet that Leah “Gllty” Hayes will be barred from attending Combo Breaker LLC events until further notice. This initial tweet then caused a huge ripple effect for the community as more FGC organizers and TO’s began to also bar Gllty’s participation.
Due to recently collected information regarding unwarranted and unwanted physical contact between event attendees, Leah “Gllty” Hayes will be barred from attending Combo Breaker LLC events until further notice.
— COMBO BREAKER (@ComboBreakerFGC) August 13, 2019
This is one of many stories within the FGC, which members are calling #CLEANTHEFGC, where more prominent and active members of the community are having accusations laid on them. Esports photographer Chris Bahn was also banned from any further FGC involvement following sexual misconduct allegations by James Fink of The On Blast Show in a Facebook post.
As many members of different communities come out in support of those affected, time will tell if this sort of misconduct will happen in the future and what will be done to tackle those issues. The members currently hold zero tolerance for this kind of behavior aiming for a more inclusive space.
Credit: Rudolf Baldovino