During tonight’s episode of The Proposal, you may notice that only nine men are are competing for the chance to marry one mystery woman. Why is that? Why aren’t ten men vying for our mystery woman’s heart, like usual?
In recent weeks, two women have come forward accusing contestant Michael Friday of sexual misconduct. Friday has since been edited out of the episode, according to Monsters and Critics, which is why tonight’s finale only features nine eligible bachelors.
The first woman to publicly share her allegations against Friday is Erica Denae Meshke. On June 21, Meshke uploaded a status to Facebook that read, “One of the men pictured here was directly responsible for my date rape.” She went on to share a screenshot of Friday’s Instagram account to identify him as the man she was referring to.
In the post, Meshke writes about a night last November in which she says she endured five hours of “unspeakable” things. She says she met Friday through Tinder and he invited her to meet in the entertainment room of an apartment complex. When she arrived, there were other men there whom Friday introduced as his friends. Friday then left, at which point Meshke was given a drink she believes was spiked, and taken upstairs to an apartment. She does not write about the specifics of what occurred in the apartment.
“I’ve lost sleep, relationships, self esteem, trust, and countless other things because of that night,” Meshke continues. “And I’m done keeping it quiet. Imagine going through the most traumatic event in your life. Now imaging that after every effort to never think of it again, you’re in bed after a long day, mindlessly scrolling through Facebook articles, and you see the man at fault’s face pop up on your timeline. Now imagine discovering his face will be plastered ALL OVER TELEVISION.”
In response to Meshke’s accusations, ABC issued a statement that read, “An allegation has been made against a contestant on next week’s episode of ‘The Proposal.’ While the accusation was not related to the contestant’s appearance on the program, we take it very seriously.” Friday’s episode was also cancelled.
After the statement was issued, another Milwaukee woman came forward with accusations against Friday. In an interview with the Daily Beast that has since been removed, the woman, Karina Solina, is quoted by Vulture as saying, “He basically sexually assaulted me.” Solina says she met Friday on Instagram, and after a few drinks, she became “drunk and very tired.” She explains that she told Friday she wanted to sleep, but he subsequently took her to his own home. Vulture quotes Solina as saying of the experience she had as his place, “I was definitely not able to consent to what I was doing. I knew I didn’t consent, but I was also too drunk so I felt like it was my fault for the longest time.”
Friday has responded to the allegations on Twitter, saying he plans to sue those making “bullshit” accusations about him.