U.S.

Gamergate’s Mercedes Carrera Arrested for Sexual Abuse of a Young Child

Adult film actress Melinda Smith—or Mercedes Carrera, as fans know her—was arrested Tuesday, along with pornographic films producer and director Jason Whitney, for alleged sexual abuse of a young child, CBS Los Angeles reports. Police have reason to believe Smith and Whitney may have sexually assaulted additional victims.

The Rancho Cucamonga Police Department were first made aware of the alleged sexual assault on a minor on January 31. Smith and Winston stand accused of “inappropriate touching, oral copulation and digital penetration.” After searching Smith and Whitney’s home police found evidence corroborating their extensive interview with the young girl, finding two loaded handguns and a bedroom “set” for recording pornographic videos. The abuse allegedly occurred over a four-month period.

On Wednesday, Whitney and Smith each plead not guilty to eight counts of sexually abusing a child under the age of 10. They were denied bail and are still in custody.

In addition to her career in pornography, Carrera is also a well-known figure in the right-wing Gamergate movement. Prompted by false allegations made by an ex-boyfriend of game developer Zoe Quinn in 2014, Gamergate activists harassed women game developers and video game analysts. While adherents claimed Gamergate was a crusade against journalistic bias they saw in games journalism, several of their principal claims were false, including that a game developer had sex with a game reviewer in exchange for a favorable review (the site ran no review of her game).

Carrera became a star in the movement and with the far right more broadly, appearing on programs hosted by right-wing conspiracy theorist Paul Joseph Watson and Gavin McInnes, founder of the violent extremist group the Proud Boys.

“We all get to make the choice every single day about who we want to be.” Carrera said in a Daily Caller profile, railing against feminists and “SJWs,” or social justice warriors—an intended insult widely used by conservative social critics against feminists, Black Lives Matter and other civil rights activists.

Police have released photos of Smith and Whitney because of the possibility that other children have been abused under similar conditions and ask that victims call the Rancho Cucamonga Detective Bureau at (909) 477-2800, extension 2850.

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