CNN has learned that authorities in New York are investigating a rape allegation against actor Devin Ratray, best known for his role as an older brother in the “Home Alone” films.
Ratray, who denied the allegation in a phone call with CNN, is currently charged with domestic violence stemming from an unrelated incident in Oklahoma last December involving his then-girlfriend. He has pleaded not guilty in the case and has an upcoming hearing scheduled for October.
It was news of Ratray’s arrest in Oklahoma that prompted Lisa Smith to contact prosecutors about a police report she filed in 2017 accusing the actor of raping her at New York. He wanted to know why his file had not been followed up. Prosecutors, she said, mistakenly believed she wanted to remain anonymous and did not want to press charges. As a result, the case was dismissed, she said.
Smith, who also contacted CNN, said she was “devastated” that authorities did not fully investigate her allegations when she first came forward. She provided emails suggesting the case was closed even though she had taken steps to cooperate with the investigation, traveling from out of state to be interviewed by investigators from the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office and later providing an item of clothing she wore the night of the alleged assault. for a possible DNA test.
The NYPD declined to answer questions from CNN about the handling of the case. A spokesperson for the district attorney’s office confirmed they “have been in touch” with Smith, but declined to discuss the handling of the case. Emails reviewed by CNN show that a prosecutor recently contacted Smith for information, searched phone and text records, and contacted potential witnesses.
Ratray has not been charged in connection with Smith’s allegations.
When reached by CNN in a phone call last week, Ratray, 45, said he remembered the night with Smith nearly five years ago, but denied his rape allegation. . “We didn’t have sex,” she said.
A lawyer for Ratray did not respond to a CNN email request for comment.
Ratray, who played an older brother’s bully Macaulay Culkin in the 1990 film “Home Alone” and the 1992 sequel, has had a long acting career. He appeared in numerous movies and TV shows, including an episode of “Better Call Saul” last month.
What Smith Says Happened
Smith told CNN she had been friends with the actor for about 15 years before the alleged September 21, 2017, assault. That night, she said, she met her brother, another friend, and Ratray in a bar in New York. The group then went to Ratray’s Manhattan apartment for another drink.
Ratray served drinks for his friends, Smith said but seemed determined to give him a specific drink. Shortly after downing the drink, Smith said she was exhausted, and Ratray encouraged her to stay and sleep on her couch.
She says she thinks she was drugged.
“I remember waking up and I couldn’t move. I couldn’t really open my eyes, but I could hear what was going on and I could feel what was going on. I knew the other two people were gone. and I was still on the couch,” Smith said.
Ratray sexually assaulted her for what felt like “an eternity”, she said.
Finally, he left her alone on the couch. It was around 2 p.m. the next day, she said, when Smith was able to move enough to get into his clothes and walk out of the apartment, she said.
Smith said she was initially reluctant to report the alleged rape because she had previously been assaulted by another man and felt mistreated by police when she filed a complaint and underwent a police review. rape kit. An NYPD source confirmed to CNN that Smith made a previous report.
The day after Ratray allegedly attacked her, Smith told a friend, her sister and one of her brothers what had happened. All three confirmed on CNN that Smith confided in them about the incident at the time. Her brother told CNN he felt guilty for leaving his sister sleeping on Ratray’s couch. Smith’s sister and two of her friends also confirmed that a district attorney recently contacted them about the case.
A day after the alleged assault, Smith contacted Ratray via text message to confront him. Ratray denied the assault on the text, he said. Smith no longer has the lyrics, but a transcript of the alleged messages was in a separate text exchange between Smith and his sister, a copy of which has been reviewed by CNN.
Ratray attempted to frame the incident as a consensual encounter, per Smith’s characterization of his response, but said he was unable to have sex because he was “helpless”.
The police get involved
Weeks after the alleged assault, Smith – who had moved to Utah – said a friend of hers encouraged her to report to the police, which she did.
An NYPD detective traveled to Salt Lake City for questioning in November 2017. In the detective’s report, which he filed on January 4, he ticked a box that Smith did not want to prosecute. However, after the report was filed, Smith said she flew to New York to meet with the Manhattan District Attorney’s office to be interviewed.
Lei Smith said she never heard from the district attorney after flying her to meet them less than two months after being interviewed by the NYPD. She told CNN that she left her “sad” and “confused” by the lack of further communication.
In the fall of 2018, nearly a year after Smith first reported her assault on the NYPD, she said she came across a basket with the dress she wore on the night of the alleged assault, specifically the sweater she wore. which he believed had DNA evidence on it. She informed the NYPD detective about her discovery and sent her. She didn’t hear from the detective after sending him the clothes.
When contacted by CNN, the detective who initially met Smith declined to comment.
Smith pointed to her efforts to help with the investigation as proof of her desire to prosecute her assailant.
“Why should I have met the prosecutor in the first place, years ago, if I was unwilling to file a complaint? … All of this shocked me,” she said.
After Ratray was arrested for domestic violence last year, Smith said a friend sent him updates on the case. She said reading her name in her headlines was what motivated her to contact authorities and CNN.
“Seeing that he was accused of assaulting someone else made me realize that I had to do everything possible to stop him from hurting even more women,” she said.
In May, Smith said she met with a prosecutor from the Sex Crimes Unit of the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office, to who she said she apologized for the way her case was handled.
The prosecutor told Smith that she “should have at least received victim assistance all those years ago,” she said. “When she said it, I started crying when I realized it was the first time anyone recognized how deeply moved or traumatized I had been.”