Rooster Teeth has parted ways with veteran team members Adam Kovic and Ryan Haywood after the pair had their respective nude photographs leaked and were accused of sexually grooming underage fans.
Related: RWBY Co-Creator, Writer, And Voice Actor Miles Luna Announces Departure From Rooster Teeth
Kovic and Haywood’s troubles began on October 4th, when a massive leak of over 400 nude photos and videos acquired from Kovic leaked on popular forum Kiwifarms which, according to the original poster, were allegedly acquired by an anonymous individual who catfished Kovic through the use of a fake social media account and photos of amateur adult model Harley Spencer.
Related: Rooster Teeth Announces Ongoing Deletion of Old Content “We No Longer Feel Comfortable Hosting On Our Platforms”
The scenes depicted in the leaked media include Kovic fellating sex toys, assorted nude images of Haywood (assumedly acquired in a separate catfish by the same anonymous user), and intimate photos and videos of Kovic’s wife, though it is currently unknown whether Kovic’s wife consented to the regular taking and distribution of these images.
Initially, it was believed that Kovic had sent these images to an individual he knew was underage, but this appears to have been nothing more than speculation, as no accusation or evidence has surfaced to indicate otherwise.
Related: Former Rooster Teeth Employee Mica Burton Explains Decision for Departure: “I Didn’t Leave Because of the Community, I Left Because of the Company”
However, this would not be the case for Haywood, as following the leak of these images, two women came forward and claimed that Haywood had willingly and knowingly engaged in sexually charged communications and actions with underage fans.
One such fan, Tessa Graves, claimed that she was 17 at the time she began engaging in an “on-and-off” sexually-charged relationship with Haywood, though she also admits that she had misled Haywood into believing she was 18 years old.
Related: Rooster Teeth Co-Founder and RWBY VA Joel Heyman Confirms Departure from Company: “I was “Laid Off””
Another fan, Michelle Vologs, alleged that she “lost her virginity” to Haywood in 2017 and described the encounter as “very rough”, stating that Haywood “ripped her dress off, put a condom, [and] without any prep or foreplay he just penetrated me.”
Vologs also shared photos she claims were taken in the hotel room on the night of the incident and noted that Haywood “never really asked for my age,” instead vaguely asking her if she was “in high school or college.”
Related: RWBY Lead Animator Ian Kedward Leaves Rooster Teeth After 7 Years: “Some Good. Then There Was All The Bad.”
In the wake of these leaks and accusations, both Kovic and Haywood released separate statements announcing their respective departures from the company.
“I made mistakes and will be leaving RT to focus on rebuilding my family and life,” wrote Haywood on October 6th. “I’m sorry to anyone I’ve hurt.”
Haywood also took the opportunity to “say emphatically that I never did anything illegal” and asked upset fans to “stop harassing and threatening my family.”
Related: Rooster Teeth Announces Jordan Levin as New CEO, Major Management Changes After Company Laid Off 13% of Employees
In a statement released on October 8th, Kovic admitted that he had “destroyed long friendships, and upturned the life of the most incredible woman I know” through his infidelity, and informed fans that he would be “stepping away to get help, salvage friendships, and above all else, restore the life I have damaged.”
Kovic has since completely deleted his entire account.
Related: RWBY Production Company Rooster Teeth Contradicts Previous Statements About Inclusion, Tells Customers To Get Lost “If You’re Not With Us”
Rooster Teeth also announced Kovic and Haywood’s departures on their official Twitter profile, stating that they had “parted ways with two employees whose conduct did not reflect the values we strive to uphold in our code of conduct” and would be “adjusting our programming accordingly to move forward.”
These events have also prompted responses from various other Rooster Teeth employees, which have since been collected in an on-going thread on the Rooster Teeth subreddit.
What do you make of these leaks and allegations? Where do you think Rooster Teeth’s content will go from here? Let us know your thoughts on social media or in the comments down below!