Why did Pauley Perrette leave the hit TV show NCIS? Star hints ‘multiple physical assaults’ to blame

BEVERLY HILLS, CA - DECEMBER 04: Actress Pauley Perrette attends The Trevor Project's 2016 TrevorLIVE LA at The Beverly Hilton Hotel on December 4, 2016 in Beverly Hills, California. (Photo by Charley Gallay/Getty Images for The Trevor Project)

She played forensic scientist Abby Sciuto on the hit show NCIS for 15 seasons, but now actress Pauley Perrette is leaving behind some clues regarding what led to her departure.

Her beloved character left the show last week after appearing in more than 350 episodes of the CBS drama. On Twitter Sunday, Perrette said she was the victim of “multiple physical assaults.” Perrette initially announced her plans to leave the show in October.

“I refused to go low, that’s why I’ve never told publicly what happened. But there are tabloid articles out there that are telling total lies about me. If you believe them? Please leave me alone. You clearly don’t know me. (Sorry guys, had to be said),” she wrote in the first of a series of tweets.

Clearly struggling with how much to say, she said she had to withhold the truth to “protect my crew, jobs and so many people.”

“But at what cost?” she wrote. “I don’t know. I just don’t know. Just know, I’m trying to do the right thing, but maybe silence isn’t the right thing about crime.”

She went on to say that a “very rich, very powerful publicity ‘machine’” was working against her and planting false stories.

“No morals, no obligation to truth, and I’m just left here, reading the lies, trying to protect my crew. Trying to remain calm. He did it,” she wrote.

Perrette didn’t specify who “he” referred to.

In her final tweet Sunday, she wrote, “I’ve been supporting anti-bullying programs forever. But now I KNOW because it was ME! If it’s school or work, that you’re required to go to? It’s horrifying. I left. Multiple Physical Assaults. I REALLY get it now. Stay safe. Nothing is worth your safety. Tell someone.”

US Weekly and People magazines both covered the story this week and said they’d reached out to CBS for a statement. Both said they hadn’t received a response.

Here’s the tweet Perrette wrote in October confirming her departure from the show: