For a number of reasons, Luzanne Otte, a Los Angeles lawyer, turned down Southern Charm star Thomas Ravenel’s offer for her to relocate from California to Charleston, but the main two were that one, she never wanted to be on a reality show and two, over the eight times they went out, he started to scare her. This was last spring before any of the current sexual assault accusations were out there and before the Charleston Police had launched an investigation into a former nanny’s rape allegations.
Luzanne met Ravenel through her close friend, Patricia Altschul, who she considers like a second mother, says FitsNews. She explains that Patricia threw a cocktail party when Luzanne came to visit her at her home in Charleston. Otte had heard about Thomas’ reputation and declined his invitations to go out. She says that Ravenel kept trying and asked for Patricia’s help to convince Otte to give him a chance.
“Thomas met with Patricia where he disclosed that the woman he had been dating, Ashley Jacobs, was ‘not a substantial woman’ and he wanted to be with an educated, cultured woman. Thomas requested that Patricia put in a good word and confirmed his intention to break up with Ashley to date me.”
Luzanne says at Patricia’s urging, she agreed to go out with Thomas, and initially found him charming.
“Thomas had come out to California for polo, and we went out a few times in Santa Barbara. But when I next came a few weeks later to Charleston, I found a different, darker person.”
When Otte arrived in South Carolina, she says that Thomas seemed “fixated” on his ex, Kathryn Dennis, and said he was hoping she would fail a drug test soon, or better yet, overdose on something.
“He continued to say horrific things about Kathryn and her mother that I found chilling.”
Otte explains that she was already feeling uncomfortable when she saw Ravenel go into a trance-like state, screaming at her for no reason and he was making no sense. Luzanne says that out of the blue, he accused her of having sex with his neighbor, and she had never met any of this neighbors. She says he screamed in her face and tried to keep her from leaving the room. She says he became volatile and scary out of nowhere.
“He was right in my face, screaming. He didn’t hit me, but it was almost scarier than being hit.”
Otte says that she left Ravenel’s house to stay with Altschul, and that was the last time she saw Thomas.
Luzanne explains that she broke things off with Ravenel via a note, and that was it, as she realized that her first impression was correct.
“I was leery of pursuing a relationship with a convicted felon. During the week we dated, it was evident that Thomas derived a sadistic pleasure from highlighting weakness in others. Where no weakness could be found, he issued malicious falsehoods with impunity and without compunction.”
Nearly six months had passed, and while Otte was aware that Ravenel had made Ashley a similar offer to the one she had declined, she felt as if she had dodged a bullet. But then she started hearing from friends that he name was being mentioned on a gossip blog as a stalker who wanted Thomas back. Ashley had allegedly found out that she wasn’t the first person asked to move to Charleston and be Ravenel’s girlfriend for the season and she got upset, saying that Luzanne was cyberbullying her.
“I talked to Patricia and said I would be happy to speak to Ashley and clear things up, but Ashley wouldn’t speak to her. The trolling and mentions online just got worse.”
When asked about the lowest point, she said that the physical threats have been the scariest, but the mocking and bullying using accounts that are allegedly her family members are disturbing.
“The accounts created to impersonate and mock my family have been the most painful. Being terrorized for 4 months without interruption has transformed my view of humanity. Prior to meeting Thomas, I had not been exposed to the abject hatred of strangers.”
Luzanne says she continues working with her lawyer to pursue legal action against Ravenel, Ashley Jacobs, and the gossip blog which smeared her name. Meanwhile, Thomas Ravenel continues to fight on multiple fronts as Bravo and the Charleston Police are both investigating the sexual assault allegations leveled against him.