Luann de Lesseps’ ex Garth Wakeford sued for allegedly raping NY Times reporter Sarah Maslin Nir

An ex-boyfriend of “Real Housewives of New York City” alum Luann de Lesseps has been sued for alleged battery and false imprisonment.

New York Times reporter Sarah Maslin Nir filed a lawsuit against Garth Wakeford in New York just before the Adult Survivors Act was set to expire, alleging that the celebrity trainer plied her with alcohol and raped her in the Hamptons in the summer of 2001 when she was 18 and he was 31.

In the complaint — which was filed last Wednesday by attorney Roberta Kaplan and obtained Monday by Page Six exclusively — Nir said she had just graduated from high school when she and some friends visited Stephen Talkhouse, a popular music venue in Amagansett.

Wakeford worked there as a bouncer, according to the suit, and allegedly knew Nir and her pals were underage but “allowed them to enter the venue without showing identification” and “instructed the bartender to serve Nir numerous drinks ‘on him.’”

New York Times reporter Sarah Maslin Nir is suing Garth Wakeford for an alleged rape. onceuponahorse/Instagram
Nir alleged that the celebrity trainer plied her with alcohol and raped her in 2001 when she was 18 and he was 31. Patrick McMullan via Getty Images

Nir claimed Wakeford offered to give her a ride home to her parents’ house, which was only a few miles away, after his shift. She accepted his offer because she viewed him as “safe.”

According to the suit, Wakeford drove an “extremely and visibly intoxicated” Nir to a nearby beach at the end of Springs Fireplace Road in East Hampton.

She claimed she was unable to “physically get out of the car or walk on her own,” so Wakeford — who is 6-foot-5 — “lifted Nir out of her seat in the car and walked her to a beach trail as she lost consciousness.”

Nir filed her lawsuit against Wakeford in New York just before the Adult Survivors Act was set to expire. Sarah Maslin Nir/Facebook

Nir alleged in the complaint that once she regained consciousness, she was on the ground with her underpants around one of her ankles, and “Wakeford was on top of her, penetrating her with his penis.”

“She struggled to break free from Wakeford, repeating ‘no’ and ‘stop,’” the suit claimed. “But Wakeford pinned her to the ground and told her to ‘wait, I’m almost finished.’ Nir somehow managed to raise her knees and pushed Wakeford out of her body. As she did so, Wakeford ejaculated in her face, leaving her eyes red and burning.”

In the complaint, Nir claimed she encountered Wakeford about a year after the alleged rape and confronted him, telling him that she “wasn’t there” when he allegedly penetrated her.

The lawsuit claimed Wakeford admitted to what he had done and acknowledged he knew she “wasn’t there,” adding that it was the worst thing he had ever done to someone, according to the court documents.

“She struggled to break free from Wakeford, repeating ‘no’ and ‘stop,’” the suit alleged. “But Wakeford pinned her to the ground and told her to ‘wait, I’m almost finished.’” onceuponahorse/Instagram

Nir said she opened up to therapists, friends and family over the years about the purported incident.

She claimed she tried to file a report with the East Hampton Police Department in 2017, but after the responding officer allegedly said he knew Wakeford personally, she chose not to finalize it because she was “terrified” she would “not be treated fairly.”

Nir alleged in the lawsuit that after more work in therapy, she decided to go through with reporting the alleged rape in 2019, which she claimed resulted in an investigation. Ultimately, Wakeford was not indicted.

According to the suit, the journalist has endured “lasting trauma” and suffers from “extreme emotional distress.” She claimed she struggles with “forming relationships” and “physical intimacy,” sometimes even experiencing “panic attacks” and “vomiting” both leading up to and during sexual intimacy and intercourse.

Wakeford “ejaculated in [Nir’s] face, leaving her eyes red and burning,” the court documents claimed. Patrick McMullan via Getty Images

Nir is demanding a trial by jury.

“New York’s Adult Survivors Act (or ‘ASA’) was passed a little more than a year ago so that people who have been the victim of a sexual assault that occurred long ago, at a time when societal attitudes were far different, could have a real chance to finally seek and obtain justice,” attorney Kaplan tells Page Six. “That’s exactly what the case that we filed for Ms. Maslin Nir last week is all about. We are so honored to be representing her.”


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However, Wakeford’s rep tells us, “These claims are meritless and without basis. In point of fact, Ms. Nir’s own brother and sister-in-law employed Mr. Wakeford as a trainer for eight years after the alleged assault.”

The rep continues, “Mr. Wakeford looks forward to establishing the facts around their consensual relationship in the course of this unfounded litigation, which is predicated on lies.”

Wakeford previously dated Luann de Lesseps. SplashNews.com
He met the “RHONY” alum in 2020 via dating app Hinge. They revealed in 2021 that they had broken up. SplashNews.com

Wakeford met de Lesseps in August 2020 via dating app Hinge. The former Bravolebrity, now 58, confirmed their romance that November.

Though Wakeford was featured in a few episodes of “RHONY,” he and de Lesseps revealed in April 2021 that they had broken up.

If you or someone you know is affected by any of the issues raised in this story, call the Sexual Assault Hotline at 1-800-330-0226.

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