UPDATE 3/20 6:56 P.M. EST: In a statement sent to PerezHilton.com, Sig Hansen says:
"I'm a pretty plain-spoken guy, and to me, this is nothing more than a shakedown. The allegations are completely false, rehashed lies my ex-wife Lisa Eckstrom used nearly 30 years ago to take away my daughter, and has continued to try to use to extort money from me. The fact is, decades ago I was exonerated of these allegations after a full court trial. My ex-wife Lisa took me – and worst of all, my parents – to court for this back in 1990, making these baseless claims. We were fully exonerated after a prosecuting attorney, a judge, court-appointed experts, a guardian ad litem and team of other child experts all agreed that these claims were pure fiction. I cooperated 100 percent, including taking a polygraph test that also confirmed my innocence. The tragedy is that my ex-wife Lisa has poisoned my relationship with our daughter through years of vile lies. Lisa has spun a web of deceit, depriving my daughter and me of a healthy, loving relationship. To me, that is the definition of child abuse. This is the third time the Eckstrom family has threatened to publicly rehash lies about me unless I pay them a pile of money, and I finally said enough is enough. If you've got something, bring it, because it was BS then, and it is BS now."
Legal drama incoming for Deadliest Catch star Sig Hansen, who is now being accused in court of molesting his daughter nearly three decades ago, based on new court documents released uncovered by the media.
Hansen, the crab boat captain made famous by the Discovery Channel documentary TV show, is being sued in court by his daughter, Melissa Eckstrom.
Eckstrom argues that because of the alleged sexual abuse — which she says happened to her as a 2-year-old in 1990 — she has battled depression, eating disorders, and suicidal thoughts.
In a court declaration, Eckstrom stated about the alleged abuse:
"I have memories … of being in a room alone with my father and crying out in pain."
Her lawsuit, which was initially filed in King County, Washington last year, included medical findings and other reports, as well as a deputy prosecutor's letter written back in 1990 that indicates the state had declined to file charges against Hansen because they couldn't prove the case "beyond a reasonable doubt."
Hansen, the captain of the Seattle-based fishing vessel The Northwestern, is adamant about what this means, at least to him:
"This is nothing more than an old-fashioned shakedown. It's a completely frivolous lawsuit full of lies that my ex-wife made up to take away my daughter, and still uses to try to extort money from me. It's blackmail."
Now, the Washington state Court of Appeals will determine whether it will allow the case to go to trial based on a King County judge's ruling. This is a big deal, too, because the trial might set precedent for whether other child sex abuse victims can later sue their alleged abusers as adults.
Either way, this is a big deal — and it'll be interesting to see exactly what happens next.