Court document details woman's claim she was raped by Haymarket - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Court document details woman's claim she was raped by Haymarket Whiskey Bar owner

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For the first time, court documents are providing details about a woman's claim that she was raped by Haymarket Whiskey Bar owner Matthew Landan. For the first time, court documents are providing details about a woman's claim that she was raped by Haymarket Whiskey Bar owner Matthew Landan.

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- For the first time, court documents are providing details about a woman's claim that she was raped by Haymarket Whiskey Bar owner Matthew Landan.

The woman's account of the alleged rape appeared in a March 14 filing in Jefferson Circuit Court, responding to a defamation lawsuit by Haymarket Whiskey Bar and Landan against that woman and others.

Though the woman is named in the filing, WDRB is not identifying her, based on a longstanding policy of not naming alleged victims of rape. It should also be noted that, to date, no criminal charges have been filed against Landan.

In the court filing, the woman says she met Landan in either October or November 2013, via the "FetLife" social media site. In the filing, FetLife is described as, "a Facebook-like social networking site that serves 8 million people interested in exploring their own sexuality and non-traditional relationships."

While on the site, the woman says she was using the handle "Westley_Moore" and Landan was using the handle, "DerbyCityEsp." The woman says Landan's profile emphasized that he needed, "honesty and communication...in order to survive," and she initially reached out to him because she was new to Louisville.

"After minor online chit-chat, [the woman] decided to meet Landan in a public place, to see if there was a possible connection," according to the filing. "Following two public meetings, [the woman] accepted Landan's offer to meet him at his apartment in Cherokee Triangle. After two such non-eventful meetings with Landan at his apartment, in late November 2013, [the woman] was invited back to Landan's apartment for a third time, where he told her he had a 'surprise' for her on this date."

The woman says that after she arrived at Landan's apartment for her "special date, dressed for a night out," Landon handed her a pre-made drink and disappeared into the restroom "for a considerable time." When he returned, the woman says she was "already seated on the couch relaxing, listening to the mood music that Landan had pre-selected."

"What [the woman] thought would be a special date and night of dinner and entertainment instead turned into a night in, on the couch," the filing states.

At that point, the filing states, the two began engaging in "totally consensual" intimate physical contact, with an agreed upon "safe word" that should be uttered, if the contact should stop. 

"Within a short time, however, events took a drastic change," the filing claims.

According to the court documents, Landan tied the woman's hands behind her back. Initially, she did not object, "believing Landan was an honest man who would abide by their safe word." 

However, the report indicates that Landan began engaging in behavior that the woman did not wish to take part in. At that point, the filing claims that the woman began screaming for him to stop, but instead he stuffed his socks in her mouth and raped her.

When the sexual assault ended, the filing states that Landan smeared feces on the woman's face.

According to court documents, Landan then went into the bathroom to clean up because he "felt dirty," and the woman managed to untie herself, gather up her belongings and leave.

"Once outside, [the woman] called her former boyfriend and told him what happened," the filing states. "The next morning, [she] called her sister and also told her what happened. Ashamed of what happened to her, embarrassed as to what Landan had done to her, afraid of public scrutiny being brought down upon her, and terrified of Landan blackballing her from the food and beverage industry that supported both her and her child, [she] decided not to report the rape to police."

The filing says it all came to a head in November 2017, when the woman was invited to a beer/brew unveiling at Haymarket Whiskey Bar. On Nov. 13, she says she posted a meme on Facebook, under an account with the name Westley Moore, that included a picture of Landan with the words, "MATTHEW LANDAN IS A RAPIST." Shortly after that, the woman says she was contacted by other women who said they had been raped by Landan.

Landan denies the allegations. The filing on behalf of the woman was in response to a lawsuit Landan filed on Nov. 17, arguing that the meme and the rape allegations are, "false and malicious and constitute defamation per se."

The woman's response, "denies her statements are false and malicious and constitute defamation per se, because Landan raped her."

WDRB reached out to Andrew Horne, Landan's attorney, but he declined to comment. 

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