As news broke that former Disney child star Kyle Massey had been charged with a felony for allegedly sending explicit photos and videos of himself to a 13-year-old girl over Snapchat, his camp attempted to wave off the criminal investigation as an extortion plot from a disgruntled mother with whom Massey reportedly had a previous relationship.
But The Daily Beast spoke with several women who claim they also communicated with 29-year-old Massey while they were teenagers in high school over various social media apps, including Snapchat and Instagram.
Their interactions with the actor date as far back as 2012. While some of the conversations were harmless in nature, other accounts suggest Massey had a pattern of frequently communicating with minors inappropriately.
Aubrey Burrough recalled how she and her friends, who were between the ages of 17 and 18, would often Snapchat Massey as a joke after finding his handle on Tumblr back in 2012. Massey would often open their messages and occasionally reply, she said.
The Daily Beast reviewed a Snapchat video sent to one of Burrough’s friends by Massey, who was replying to a twerking video the male friend had sent to the actor. Massey is seen filming himself in the mirror, giving him the “OK” hand signal, in a humorous sign of approval.
“Definitely really creepy looking back, but not something I’ve given a lot of thought to since,” Burrough explained. “We were doing it as a joke and never sent anything actually explicit but seeing how often he opened them and occasionally replied, that does not surprise me [that he had other communications with minors].”
Others had more concerning interactions with Massey.
One woman, who wished to remain anonymous, claimed she once sent a suggestive photo of a 15-year-old posing in a sports bra to Massey, who opened the photo, but did not block the underage user. He continued to accept and open photos from the teen afterwards, sometimes replying to various messages.
“She so clearly was underage when we would have sent that,” she said, noting she now feels horrified that she ever sent such a picture of a young friend to an adult male.
Jennifer DeMattei said she and her friends used to try and get the attention of random celebrities by including them in group messages on Instagram. In Nov. 2015, they added Massey to one of these chats. Massey, then 23, started a new chat with the 15-year-olds, calling them “sexy ladies,” according to a screenshot of the message reviewed by The Daily Beast.
DeMattei said that there was no mistaking they were still in high school and underage from the girls’ page.
A model based in Los Angeles, who wished to be kept anonymous, said Massey was “incredibly creepy and pushy” toward her while she lived at an apartment complex that he would frequent. The woman said she eventually ended up blocking Massey to avoid his constant advances.
The charge against Massey comes just a few days after 34-year-old Nickelodeon actor Drake Bell pleaded guilty in Ohio to charges related to inappropriately messaging a 15-year-old fan in December 2017.
Massey claimed on Wednesday he was only made aware he had been charged with the felony (communication with a minor for immoral purpose) through the news. The charge was filed in King County, Washington, on July 14, and Massey missed his Monday arraignment, according to court documents.
Prosecutors accuse Massey of sending explicit messages to the young girl over Snapchat between December 2018 and January 2019. He allegedly exposed his penis in some of the videos he sent to the minor, according to police who viewed the explicit material from a flash drive the mother handed over as evidence.
Angel Massey, the mother of the That’s So Raven and Cory’s in the House actor, quickly took to Instagram to rail against the victim’s mother, outing her and the minor’s identity in the process.
Angel recounted how the Washington woman had filed suit against Massey in March 2019 for $1.5 million over the same claims, however the suit was dropped by the family because they didn’t think Massey had “enough money to make the case worth it,” according to the police statement referenced in the criminal filing against Massey.
The suit claimed Massey knew the victim since she was 4 years old, and he presented himself like a “father figure to her.” The young girl and her family allegedly kept in contact with Massey because the little girl was interested in pursuing a career in the entertainment industry.
In November 2018, their communications increased because the girl was interested in securing a role in a rebooted version of Disney’s Cory in the House. Massey encouraged the then 13-year-old to move out to Los Angeles to stay with him and his girlfriend, the suit alleged. It was around that time that Massey allegedly sent the teen the explicit messages, photos, and videos over Snapchat.
But Angel alleged that the 2019 suit was a ploy to bilk Massey out of a small fortune, claiming that Massey began a relationship with the victim’s mother when he was 16 years old, which lasted several years on-and-off. Describing the mother as “scorned,” Angel claimed Massey had sent the explicit photos to her.
In a statement through his lawyer, Lee Hutton, Massey said the claims against him were extortive, however failed to definitively say his client was innocent of any misconduct.
“It is unfortunate that Kyle Massey had to learn through the media yesterday that the 2019 allegations have resurfaced in the State of Washington a year after their dismissal,” Hutton said in a statement. (Hutton did not respond to a request for comment.)
“Massey was never properly served or notified as represented to the court and the pleadings are procedurally and substantively deficient on its face. Massey intends to aggressively defend these accusations again and will seek civil damages from those that refuse to hear the facts.”
“We plan to seek an early dismissal—finally putting these extortive attempts to rest,” he added.