The star, who has upwards of 2 million YouTube subscribers, gained a following by posting "prank" videos, several of which involve his attempts to pick up women and others of which are baldly misogynistic. In the wake of a particularly egregious clip posted in September, in which Pepper uses a fake hand to grope women, several young women have come forward with allegations of rape. The fake hand video, and a subsequent clip in which Pepper claimed it was a "social experiment," have both been pulled from YouTube, but a reuploaded version can be viewed here.
The most recent accusation comes from an 18-year-old woman who filed a police report with the LAPD yesterday. According to the woman's account, she met Pepper at a Los Angeles party on September 5, then left to go to a cafe with him and two of his friends. When Pepper was driving her home, at around 3:30 a.m. he dropped off his friends first, then told her he had to pick up something from his apartment before he could take her to her house. Pepper went to his bedroom after they arrived at his apartment, she said. From BuzzFeed:
The woman said she played with the dog, and Pepper walked into another room. She said she felt strange being alone in a part of the apartment without him and followed him.
When she realized that Pepper had led her into his bedroom, the woman said that he put her at ease by opening up his laptop and asking her to watch YouTube prank videos with him on his bed. "He just made it another really friendly situation where it was not flirting or anything, he was just showing me something," she said.
Shortly after, she said, he began making unwarranted advances toward her, then raped her.
The woman posted a YouTube video, in which her face is hidden and her voice is disguised, called "Sam Pepper doesn't understand the word no." In it, she says that he physically overpowered her, and that after he finished, he told her that "The way [she] reacted," that is, pushing him off and repeatedly telling him to stop, "Made him come twice as fast." The video's description states that she published the video "in hopes of preventing this from happening" to other women.
The woman told BuzzFeed that Pepper contacted her threatening to pursue legal action if she reported the alleged rape to police or the press.
"He continued to do things to me against my will and then forced me to give him head, nearly choking me," she said. "Afterwards, he threw me a napkin and told me that it was time to go."
According to BuzzFeed, every woman whom they have interviewed about allegations against Pepper has said she was inspired by a YouTube video called "Sam Pepper - The Real 'Reveal,'" in which an anonymous 19-year-old woman talks about being raped by Pepper after meeting him while working at a restaurant. That woman told BuzzFeed that the LAPD filed a report on her behalf after she received an examination at Kaiser Permanente Los Angeles Medical Center, but that it did not result in an arrest.
[Image via YouTube]