Bob Dylan fans say the accuser’s allegations do not match up with details of the singer-songwriter’s 1965 touring schedule.
A lawsuit filed in New York City claims that singer-songwriter Bob Dylan sexually abused a 12-year-old girl in 1965.
According to CNN, the lawsuit was filed by a now-68-year-old-woman who says that, over the course of six weeks, Dylan “befriended [her] and established an emotional connection.”
Ultimately, the plaintiff—named only as J.C.—says that Dylan’s friendship transformed into abuse, with the singer-songwriter allegedly sexually assaulting her numerous times between April and May of 1965.
The abuse allegedly occurred at the Chelsea Hotel in New York City, where Dylan kept an apartment.
“Dylan’s predatory, sexual and unlawful acts against Plaintiff amounted to a series of harmful and offensive contacts to Plaintiff’s person, all of which were done intentionally by him to her without consent,” the lawsuit charges.
Attorneys for J.C. say that Dylan first befriended the woman “to lower her inhibitions with the object of sexually abusing her, which he did, coupled with the provision of drugs, alcohol and, threats of physical violence, leaving her emotionally scarred and psychologically damaged to this day.”
A spokesperson for Bob Dylan told CNN that “the 56-year-old claim is untrue and will be vigorously defended.”
National Public Radio notes that some Dylan fans were quick to observe that J.C.’s accusations seem at odds with the singer’s schedule. In May and April of 1965, for instance, Dylan was on tour in England—and then retreated to Portugal for a vacation afterward.
However, J.C.’s attorneys maintain that such information is “not inconsistent” with his client’s claims.
“The complaint speaks for itself,” attorney Daniel Isaacs told NPR. “The complaint was filed after much research and thorough vetting and there’s no doubt she was with him at the Hotel Chelsea.”
CNN adds that J.C.’s lawsuit was filed just one day before the New York Child Victims Act expired on August 14th, 2021.
The New York Child Victims Act provided a “look-back window,” enabling the adult survivors of childhood abuse to file lawsuits against their abusers and institutions which facilitated or negligently failed to address credible allegations of abuse.
The look-back window, in effect, temporarily voided the state’s statute of limitations—letting survivors file suit over abuse that could have happened decades ago.
J.C. claims to have suffered depression, anxiety, dissociation, and other long-term effects from the abuse.
NBC News reports that, while the lawsuit seeks compensatory and punitive damages against Dylan, it does not any desired amount.
However, the lawsuit did specify that J.C. plans to seek an amount “exceeding the limits” of the lower courts.