Modern Family Star: Mom Abused Me

Ariel Winter's mother denies allegations

By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff

Posted Nov 8, 2012 9:54 AM CST

(Newser) – Ariel Winter, the 14-year-old who plays Alex Dunphy on Modern Family, has been granted a restraining order against her mom after alleging abuse. Ariel's court papers allege some very disturbing behavior by her mom, Chris Workman: "ongoing physical abuse (slapping, hitting, pushing) and emotional abuse (vile name-calling, personal insults about minor and minor's weight, attempts to 'sexualize' minor, deprivation of food, etc.) for an extended period of time." But Workman tells People the allegations are not true, and that she has letters from doctors and stylists who are on her side. For the time being, a judge granted Ariel's older sister guardianship until a Nov. 20 hearing.

That sister, actress Shanelle Gray, was also reportedly removed from her mother's home almost two decades ago after similar claims. But their brother, Jimmy Workman (who played Pugsley Addams in the Addams Family movies), defends his mother against both sisters. "There is no truth to these allegations," he tells Us. "The allegations made 20 years ago are not true and the ones today are not true. This is a mother who does everything for her kids."

Actress Ariel Winter arrives at the 16th Annual Millennium Awards presented by Global Green USA on Saturday June 2, 2012 in Santa Monica, Calif.
Actress Ariel Winter arrives at the 16th Annual Millennium Awards presented by Global Green USA on Saturday June 2, 2012 in Santa Monica, Calif.   (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP)
In this Sept. 24, 2012 file photo, Ariel Winter attends the World Premiere of Batman: The Dark Knight Returns Part 1 at The Paley Center for Media, in Beverly Hills, Calif.
In this Sept. 24, 2012 file photo, Ariel Winter attends the World Premiere of "Batman: The Dark Knight Returns Part 1" at The Paley Center for Media, in Beverly Hills, Calif.   (Photo by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP, File)
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