Steven Tyler denies 1970s sexual assault of a teen, seeks lawsuit dismissal

Updated
A man with long hair sings onstage with a guitarist and drummer behind him
Steven Tyler denied claims that he sexually assaulted a 16-year-old girl in the 1970s. (Winslow Townson / Invision / Associated Press)

Steven Tyler has denied claims that he sexually assaulted a teen he met in 1973 three months after the alleged victim filed a lawsuit against the Aerosmith frontman.

In his response, filed in Los Angeles Superior Court last week, Tyler "denies, generally and specifically, each and every allegation and cause of action" detailed in the complaint filed by plaintiff Julia Misley.

According to the December lawsuit, Misley — whose maiden name was Holcomb — met Tyler after a concert in Portland, Ore., in 1973. She was 16 at the time, and he was 25.

Tyler "performed various acts of criminal sexual conduct upon Plaintiff," according to the lawsuit. Tyler allegedly pursued her via frequent phone calls and continued a sexual relationship with the teen.

The lawsuit states that when she became pregnant with Tyler's child in 1975, the singer prevented her from seeking prenatal care and ultimately persuaded her to get an abortion in fall 1975.

In his March response, Tyler issued 24 defenses against the allegations. Among the defenses, Tyler claimed Misley consented to their relationship at the time.

The singer also said he had "immunity or qualified immunity" as her "caregiver and/or guardian." Misley's lawsuit stated that Tyler received guardianship in 1974 after making “various promises and inducements” to her mother.

Tyler also maintains that Misley "has not suffered any injury or damage as a result of any action by Defendant."

The former "American Idol" judge requested in his response that "the Complaint be dismissed with prejudice and in its entirety."

In a statement shared Wednesday, Misley's attorney, Jeff Anderson, accused the singer and his legal team of "gaslighting her by falsely claiming that she 'consented' and that the pain he inflicted was 'justified and in good faith.'"

Anderson added: "Tyler has spent the past 40 years continually hurting, shaming, profiting from, and retraumatizing this courageous survivor."

Tyler's legal representatives did not immediately respond when contacted by The Times on Wednesday.

In a statement shared in December, Misley said she was taking legal action to speak up about "an industry that protects celebrity offenders."

"I feel it is time for me to take this stand and bring this action, to speak up and stand in solidarity with the other survivors," she said.

Times staff writer Christie D'Zurilla contributed to this report.

This story originally appeared in Los Angeles Times.

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