YouTuber Syndicate denies sexual assault claims

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Tom CassellImage copyright
Rosa Russo / Alamy Stock Photo

YouTuber Syndicate, real name Tom Cassell, has denied sexually assaulting two of his ex-partners.

Cassell tweeted to say he “will be making a statement regarding the false allegations in the following days”.

Cassell, 26, has gaming and lifestyle channels with over 12 million subscribers and is also popular on streaming site Twitch.

He has been accused of rape by Twitch streamer and YouTuber Natalie Casanova, who uses the name TheZombiUnicorn.

She alleges an incident took place while the two were filming the Legends of Gaming show in 2016.

Natalie, who lives in the US, didn’t disclose the location – but filming for the show took place in Los Angeles.

Manchester-born Cassell has also been accused of abusing former girlfriend, Kaitlin Witcher, in a hotel in LA in 2012.

Both women came forward with the allegations in videos shared on Twitter over the weekend.

Twitch says it is looking into accusations of sexual harassment and assault against streamers on their platform.

“We take accusations of sexual harassment and misconduct extremely seriously,” it says in a statement.

“We are actively looking into the accounts concerning streamers affiliated with Twitch and will work with law enforcement where applicable.

“We’re thankful for the bravery shown by those who have come forward to speak about their experiences, and we are committed to working to make the streaming community safer for everyone.”

Casanova said in a video posted on her Twitter account that some of the sex the pair had was non-consensual and that Cassell had agreed he’d withdraw before ejaculating and when the time came he pinned her down.

She said: “He held me down physically, so that I could not get off of him.

“I smacked him and said ‘no, stop!'”

She also says one of Cassell’s staff members took her to get a morning-after pill at a pharmacy the next day.

Casanova said she tried to remain friends with him after the incident, but didn’t want to come forward in case he tried “to come after me”.

‘I felt alone’

Kaitlin Witcher also spoke out following Casanova’s video – posting a thread of clips on Twitter about what happened when Cassell was her first boyfriend in 2012.

She says that whilst in a hotel room he “wanted to do things”, which she refused, and he assaulted her without consent.

Witcher says she said “no” several times.

“I don’t want to feel alone, like I how I felt alone, I’m sorry to anyone who was affected by him because I didn’t come out sooner – I was just so scared to” she said in the video.

BBC Radio 1 Newsbeat has contacted Tom Cassell, Natalie Casanova, Kaitlin Witcher and YouTube for comment.

You can access information and support about sexual assault here.

Follow Newsbeat on Instagram, Facebook, Twitter and YouTube.

Listen to Newsbeat live at 12:45 and 17:45 weekdays – or listen back here.

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