“After an overwhelmingly daunting year and a half of being falsely accused of such a heinous act, today I am overwhelmingly grateful that my name has finally been cleared of any and all wrongdoing, but more importantly, I am hopeful that I can now move forward with my life and career,” Ringgold exclusively tells RadarOnline.com in a statement.
As Radar first broke last year, the Superior Court of New Jersey commenced a grand jury investigation into allegations of rape against Tom Cruise’s former right-hand man — despite his insistence that he was innocent.
According to a court document filed in the case, the purported victim in the assault insisted that last summer Ringgold did “commit criminal sexual contact … using physical force or coercion, specifically by pulling up the victim’s shirt, grabbing her right breast and putting his mouth over her left breast while stopped at a traffic light inside of his motor vehicle.”
At the time, his alleged victim spoke exclusively to Radar about her accusations, now determined to be false.
“I have to make sure that he doesn’t do this again to someone else,” the woman said in an interview. “What if it’s just not me that he did this to? How many other girls could there be?”
“My family and I have suffered several serious setbacks because of these false allegations, and although during this ordeal, the Hudson County District Attorney offered me a plea on 3 different occasions, I did not accept any of the offers,” reveals Ringgold. “I felt fiercely compelled to stand firmly in my truth, that I did not sexually assault this woman or any woman, for that matter, ever in my life.”
Ringgold's attorney, Alan L. Zegas, echoes his client’s statement. "From the outset the charges were suspect,” Zegas tells Radar. "Representations and postings of the alleged victim over the Internet about herself, including her educational background and even her picture, were false.”
Now Ringgold — best known for his six-year portrayal of Shaun Evans on One Life to Live —just wants to get back to what he does best.
“I have worked incredibly hard to get where I am today, and I would never, under any circumstances, not even for a moment, put my life, that of my family’s or my career in jeopardy,” Ringgold says.
Still, “although, the truth prevailed, and my name has been cleared in the court of law of any wrong doing, it is still difficult for me, at times, to understand how anyone could randomly accuse someone of such an egregious act, when there is no evidence or proof,” continues Ringgold. “It’s unconscionable.”
“As I have done throughout this ordeal, I will continue to hold onto the fact—with unwavering faith—that we live in a just society, where the truth reigns supreme. I am thankful, finally, justice has been served.”