‘The Rookie’: Why Afton Williamson Is Quitting the Show

The Rookie shows Nathan Fillion playing John Nolan, the oldest rookie in the LAPD. He works to prove himself as he is being trained by Talia Bishop played by Afton Williamson. Williamson announced she is quitting the show and won’t be returning next reason.

It was previously reported that Afton Williamson won’t be returning for season 2

Afton Williamson and Nathan Fillion on 'The Rookie'
Afton Williamson and Nathan Fillion on ‘The Rookie’ | Tony Rivetti via Getty Image

The actress played TO Talia Bishop in the first season of The Rookie. It was previously reported that she won’t be returning for another season.

Nathan Fillion, Alyssa Diaz, Richard T. Jones, Titus Makin Jr., Melissa O’Neil, and Eric Winter reportedly would be back. According to TV Line, Williamson was leaving on “amicable” terms. However, she has since come forward saying that isn’t the case.

Williamson claims she reported sexual harassment and experienced racial discrimination

View this post on Instagram

I will not be returning for Season 2 of The Rookie. I owe it to you my amazing fans to share the Truth. Throughout the filming of the pilot, I experienced Racial Discrimination/Racially Charged inappropriate comments from the hair department and bullying from Executive Producers. During the Season, it continued along with Sexual Harassment from a recurring guest star,Demetrius Grosse,and the racist commentary & bullying from the Hair Dept.Head, Sally Ciganovich escalated into Sexual Assault at our Wrap party.The Sexual Harassment though reported directly to the Showrunner/EP remained undocumented and was not reported to HR as promised.Ciganovich was fired ONLY after the sexual assault and NOT for an entire year of outward racism/racially charged language and bullying behavior in and out of the Hair and Makeup trailer. HR protocol was never adhered to following the above reports given by me to my Showrunner/EP and an investigation was never issued for any of my claims. The only time I was asked to participate in an investigation was after a meeting I called in June following our Season 2 announcement. This meeting included the Showrunner and two other producers as well as my agent and SAG-AFTRA Union Rep. It was clear to all present in the meeting that the Showrunner had not shared my reports with the any of the producers. After my initial report of sexual harassment, I was assured that Grosse would be fired. I was also asked to film with him the very next day as a courtesy to the script, even though we had not begun filming the episode yet. Grosse reappeared on our call sheet at the end of the season, I was even written in scenes with him. I asked the Showrunner about this and he admitted to me that the Grosse had not been fired nor had he gotten HR involved. I was asked to return this season, and promised that “everything was handled.” The investigation hadn’t even begun and Season 2 had already started filming. I turned it down and I walked. Now is the best time in the world to be a woman and I have a platform so it’s time to use my Voice. Strength comes from within. It comes from Above. “Greater is He that is within Me than he that is in the world” ❤️

A post shared by Afton Williamson (@therealaftonw) on

The actress announced on Instagram that she won’t be returning for season 2 of the show. She went on to talk about her experience in the workplace.

“Throughout the filming of the pilot, I experienced Racial Discrimination/Racially Charged inappropriate comments from the hair department and bullying from Executive Producers,” she wrote in the caption.

“During the Season, it continued along with Sexual Harassment from a recurring guest star, Demetrius Grosse, and the racist commentary & bullying from the Hair Dept. Head, Sally Ciganovich escalated into Sexual Assault at our Wrap party,” she continued.

The actress said the sexual harassment was reported to the showrunner, Alexi Hawley but it wasn’t reported to HR. She was later told that Grosse would be fired, and she was asked to film with him after a meeting with the showrunner and two producers to follow the script.

However, she was written into scenes with him at the end of the season. Williamson claimed the showrunner admitted Grosse wasn’t fired and HR wasn’t brought into the situation.

An ABC spokesperson claims there is an ongoing investigation

An ABC spokesperson gave a statement in response to the actress’ Instagram post.

“The allegations involve a production from Entertainment One. In late June, eOne made us aware and informed us that they launched an investigation that is ongoing. The safety of working environments is a top priority for us, and we take this matter very seriously,” said the spokesperson according to The Hollywood Reporter.

There was also a statement from eOne saying, “We take claims of this nature very seriously. We have initiated an independent investigation which is ongoing and as such, it would not be appropriate to comment at this time.”

Demetrius Grosse has yet to respond to the claims

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To my Fans, my Friends, my Supporters: I want to Thank EVERY SINGLE ONE OF YOU. I am so beyond overwhelmed by the outpouring of love, kind words, scriptures, strength filled quotes and devout support that has come my way. One Instagram post is just like those 2 fish and 5 loaves of Bread. The rippling effect it has had in just a few hours shows how much this world is aching with victims of racism, discrimination, sexual harassment, sexual assault, sexual abuse all of it. I am no stranger to all of the above even before this experience. But it is through this experience and my platform that God pushed me to use the power within me. It just takes a VOICE. I never imagined so many of us have experienced these horrible circumstances and that can NO LONGER GO UNHEARD. We have a voice. ALL OF US. It is our DUTY to use it. I used to fear the word Victim. I scoffed at it because all I was told when these injustices happened to me, was to Survive. Survivor I am. Victim I am also. A victim of injustice. A victim of assault. A victim of abuse and harassment. If you have experienced any of the above, you are too and I for one stand with you and I’m no longer afraid to be vocal about it. We Can Stand Together. Let’s Change This Sickness. That Change starts with US. This season on The Rookie, I was sexually harassed by fellow actor Demetrius Grosse. I was Racially Bullied and Discriminated against and Sexually Assaulted by Hair Department Head Sally Nicole Ciganovich. Let’s BE the CHANGE we WANT to SEE❤️

A post shared by Afton Williamson (@therealaftonw) on

Grosse played Detective Kevin Wolfe in multiple episodes of The Rookie. He also previously played Charleston in Frontier and Ezekiel ‘Preach’ Carter in The Brave. He, along with showrunner, Alexi Hawley have yet to respond to Williamson’s statement.

Williamson has since posted on Instagram again with a message thanking her supporters. She ended it with, “Let’s Change This Sickness. That Change starts with US. This season on The Rookie, I was sexually harassed by fellow actor Demetrius Grosse. I was Racially Bullied and Discriminated against and Sexually Assaulted by Hair Department Head Sally Nicole Ciganovich. Let’s BE the CHANGE we WANT to SEE.”