Pauley Perrette says she will never return to NCIS, the CBS police procedural she starred in for 15 seasons before announcing her surprising exit in 2017. Perrette, who played forensic scientist Abby Sciuto on the hit show, unleashed a series of bombshell posts on Twitter, in which she explained that she will never return to the CBS drama because she is “terrified” of series star Mark Harmon.
“NO, I AM NOT COMING BACK! EVER! (Please stop asking?) I am terrified of Harmon and him attacking me. I have nightmares about it. I have a new show that is SAFE AND HAPPY! You’ll love it!”
Perrette also tweeted graphic photos of an alleged NCIS crew member with stitches and a black eye, E! News reports. The actress captioned the tweet with allegations that the attack on the crew member occurred on the NCIS set and that she tried to step in.
“You think I didn’t expect blow back? You got me wrong. THIS happened To my crew member and I fought like hell to keep it from happening again! To protect my crew! And then I was physically assaulted for saying NO!? And I lost my job.”
In May 2018, Pauley Perrette launched a Twitter tirade in which she alleged that a powerful publicity “machine” was churning out false stories and keeping her silent regarding the real reason she left NCIS. Perrette wrote that she was a victim of bullying and that she left the show after “multiple physical assaults.”
— E! News (@enews) June 7, 2019
Last year, CBS issued a statement which acknowledged that Pauley Perrette came to the network with a workplace concern and that it was addressed, adding that CBS was committed to a safe work environment for all of its stars. The network noted that the actress had a “terrific run” on NCIS and that she would be missed.
According to The Wrap, Pauley Perrette’s relationship with her longtime co-star Mark Harmon became tense in 2016 when Harmon brought his dog to the NCIS set. Harmon’s dog allegedly bit an unidentified crew member and the injury required 15 stitches, but the actor reportedly still continued to bring the dog to set after the incident. Harmon’s attorney, Barry Axelrod, denied the incident and said Harmon’s dog was on a leash or in his trailer at all times. Some members of the NCIS cast and crew, who were uncomfortable with Harmon’s dog returning to the set, were reluctant to confront the actor and executive producer.
Pauley Perrette spoke out, which is when her rift with Harmon reportedly began. An insider told The Wrap that production took steps to ensure that Perrette and Harmon would never film together after their relationship soured. Indeed, Perrette and Harmon’s NCIS characters Abby Sciuto and Agent Leroy Jethro Gibbs did not share any scenes together during Season 14 of the show. For Perrette’s final NCIS season, the characters did appear onscreen together, thanks to clever editing.
Upon Pauley Perrette’s departure from NCIS, Mark Harmon told Entertainment Tonight that he would miss her and that the show would “honor” her beloved character.
“Fifteen years is a long time. People do what they do, and they move on, and they do other things, and that’s part of life,” Harmon said at the time. The actor added that he also saw Perrette’s exit as an “opportunity to rebirth, to rejuvenate, to try new things, to grow.”
Pauley Perrette currently stars on the CBS sitcom Broke. Mark Harmon has not responded to her allegations.