So this is how we're going to tango.
Earlier this week, it was revealed that 14-year-old Modern Family star Ariel Winter has been living with her older sister Shanelle Gray since October 3rd, after filing a restraining order against her mother, Chrystal Workman. Workman was accused of "ongoing physical abuse (slapping, hitting, pushing) and emotional abuse (vile name-calling, personal insults about minor and minor's weight, attempts to 'sexualize' minor, deprivation of food, etc.) for an extended period of time."
Now Ariel's mother and brother have hit back in the press, claiming that the allegations of abuse are false. They're also implying that Ariel made the whole thing up to be with her 18-year-old boyfriend, Cameron Palatas.
Earlier this week, Chrystal Workman told People that she had, among other things, the irrefutable proof of "stylists' letters" attesting that her daughter had "never been abused."
On Thursday, she offered up her own statement, in which she suggested that Ariel filed a restraining order against her because Chrystal would not allow her to have a sexual relationship with her boyfriend.
"My fourteen year old daughter has been dating [an eighteen-year-old] man and when I caught them engaging in behavior that I feel my daughter is too young mentally and physically to understand and fully grasp I put a stop to it immediately.
Being a teenager ‘in love' I thought she would cry and sulk and eventually her broken heart would heal. I would have never [have] dreamed, that she would take it to this level.
Yes, I filed charges against him because legally he is an adult and if he wants to engage in adult behavior with a minor [then] he should also be ready to suffer adult consequences for his actions and poor judgment. I will not apologize for protecting my daughter, as she means the world to me and I will always be there for her and I will always protect her to the best of my ability until the day I die."
TMZ reports that Chrystal didn't file charges against Ariel's boyfriend until 5 days after she had already lost custody of her daughter. In the report, she claimed to have walked in on the pair in bed in the guest room of her home two weeks prior.
"As for my estranged daughter, who has come out of the woodwork once it was announced that the kids on the show got a big raise recently, I will only say this, she has only seen her little sister maybe ten times in the last fourteen years, they have no relationship and her motives are not out of love, but out of spite.
I made a conscious decision years ago to distance her from the family because of the lies she told on me so many years ago. I never wanted her unstableness to effect [sic] Ariel or anyone else in the family. My biggest nightmare is now being played out in the public arena for people to make judgments on me and my daughter and our family...I only hope that as quickly as this blew up, that it will go away just as fast and Ariel will come home and we can move forward with love as a family…"
For what it's worth, Ariel frequently mentions her sister (in glowing terms) on Twitter.
Winter's older brother Jimmy Workman (a former child actor who played Pugsley Addams in the 90s Addams Family movies) sided with his mother in an interview with Entertainment Tonight:
"These allegations are not true. This is stemming over a boy that is overage, dating my little sister, and my family had no idea about until the end part of it.
[Regarding Shanelle's own accusations of abuse 20 years ago], I was there 20 years ago. I'm 32. That stuff didn't happen. It stems from almost the same situation."
Chrystal has been banned from having contact with her daughter until a November 20 court hearing.