Organizers in the fighting game community have banned Street Fighter Pro Leah “Gllty” Haynes from future events following allegations of sexual misconduct.
Allegations first came to light when Dragon Ball FighterZ player Dawn “Yohosie” Hosie accused Gllty of inappropriate touching in a tweet. Since then, several members of the fighting game community have replied with similar stories.
Gllty has admitted to making “mistakes with boundaries” in the past, and has issued a public apology on Twitter.
I've flirted with a lot of women, and in more than once instance I've made them feel uncomfortable. I've made mistakes with boundaries, and I'm aware I've hurt people.
There's a lot going on with regards to safety and comfort in event spaces. I've received a lot of harassment--
— GRPT|gllty (ギル姐) (@gllty) August 12, 2019
As a transgender woman, Gllty said she wanted to “separate [her] negative choices from the rest of the LGBT and trans community.”
Please remember separate my negative choices from the rest of the LGBT and trans community.
Don't just freely issue free passes either.
— GRPT|gllty (ギル姐) (@gllty) August 13, 2019
Following these accusations, Combo Breaker, a fighting game tournament in Illinois, announced that Gllty would be banned from attending future events until further notice.
Due to recently collected information regarding unwarranted and unwanted physical contact between event attendees, Leah “Gllty” Hayes will be barred from attending Combo Breaker LLC events until further notice.
— COMBO BREAKER (@ComboBreakerFGC) August 13, 2019
This announcement has sparked other fighting game community organizers to follow suit, such as East Coast Throwdown and Frosty Faustings, which have also barred Gllty from future events until further notice.
Gllty is not the only member of the fighting game community to be banned for unwanted physical contact in recent days. Esports photographer Chris Bahn was similarly banned from CEO, Combo Breaker, Big E Gaming, and Texas Showdown on August 11th. Fellow Street Fighter pro Ari “fLoE” Weintraub was also accused of drugging and groping a woman at Evo 2019. fLoE denied the allegations on Twitter and said he is preparing to make an official statement once he talks to a lawyer.
Combo Breaker LLC wants its attendees and fans to know that it will continue to work on providing a safe and inviting environment for you to celebrate competitive fighting games.
— COMBO BREAKER (@ComboBreakerFGC) August 10, 2019
Super Smash Bros. Ultimate player Davon “Promaelia” Crawley published a confession on TwitLonger on August 13th, admitting to two separate occasions of “uninvited sexual contact,” while under the influence of alcohol. Promaelia stated he would be inactive for the foreseeable future while he attends a program for alcohol and behavioral therapy.
These allegations are following in the wake of EVO 2019, arguably the largest fighting game tournament in the world. Discussions about safety in the fighting game community were sparked when Lee “Infiltration” Seon-woo, who was investigated for domestic abuse last year, won the championship for Samurai Shodown.
In the coming days, we may see more allegations arise on social media from the fighting game community, and what efforts tournament organizers will make to address them.