'90s Rock Stars Accused Of Terrible Crimes

The following article contains references to sexual assault, domestic violence, and child abuse

Has rock had its day of reckoning? In the aftermath of #MeToo and the Time's Up movements, more women are coming forward with horrifying tales of the abuse allegedly inflicted upon them by rock stars. Even seemingly benevolent figures, such as indie darling Win Butler of Arcade Fire, have been accused of sexual misconduct in recent years. Although it may seem as though the climate has changed and men, no matter how rich and powerful, are being made accountable for their apparent actions, history teaches us that is sadly not the case. As folks will find out via this rundown, there are numerous allegedly problematic rockers who continue to be revered by the public despite being accused of heinous crimes.

Such accusations are particularly shocking when levied at '90s rock stars. This period is often viewed as marking a shift in the musical landscape, one in which sensitive souls like Kurt Cobain and Eddie Vedder replaced '80s jock rock with their socially conscious stylings. For instance, Cobain condemned homophobia and sexism, while Vedder famously wrote "pro choice" on his arm during an unplugged show in 1992, a cause as pertinent today as it was then. 

But for every woke bae '90s musician, there was one who reinforced the negative rock 'n' roll clichés of yesteryear. And in addition to prevalent claims of sexual misconduct, many artists of the era have been accused of other serious crimes, such as theft and even murder. Let's take a look at '90s rock stars accused of terrible crimes.

Anthony Kiedis has been accused of preying on underage girls

When the Red Hot Chili Peppers first launched onto the rock landscape, charismatic frontman Anthony Kiedis exhibited his unusual blend of braggadocio and sensitive soft boy realness. It was this unique persona that endeared fans towards him. In particular, Kiedis was popular among women and girls in his heyday, but his availability to young female fans would lead to some horrific behavior on the part of the rock god.

In his autobiography "Scar Tissue," Kiedis openly admits to statutory rape of a 14-year-old girl, whom he met when the band were on tour in New Orleans. Mere minutes after meeting the girl, and before he could ask her how old she was, Kiedis had sex with her. She mentioned that she was still in school, which didn't faze the musician, before revealing that she was just 14. Despite learning that his sexual partner was a child, Kiedis admits that he had sex with her again. The girl would go on to inspire the Chilis' song, "Catholic School Girls Rule." When the girl's father, a police officer, found out about the relationship, he was enraged and sought vengeance against Kiedis.

She wasn't the only underage girl to have an inappropriate relationship with Kiedis. In a TikTok video, actor Ione Skye confirmed that she was just 16 when she began dating the musician, who was eight years older according to The Sydney Morning Herald. "Do I approve of this age gap? No. Not at all," Skye said.

If you or someone you know may be the victim of child abuse, please contact the Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline at 1-800-4-A-Child (1-800-422-4453) or contact their live chat services.

Marilyn Manson allegedly abused his exes

When Marilyn Manson debuted his outlandish shtick in the '90s, Middle America was aghast. How ironic, then, that those censorial moralists, as overzealous as they may have been, potentially turned out to be right.

In 2016, Manson's ex-girlfriend, Evan Rachel Wood, told Rolling Stone that she had been raped multiple times by an ex. Two years later, she detailed the abuse she suffered when testifying in congress in support of legislation that would grant survivors greater legal protection. She alleged that her former partner had drugged, raped, and tortured her, resulting in severe long term mental anguish. In 2021, she named her abuser for the first time as Brian Warner, aka Marilyn Manson. "He started grooming me when I was a teenager," she wrote on Instagram (via Vanity Fair), "and horrifically abused me for years ... I am here to expose this dangerous man and call out the many industries that have enabled him, before he ruins any more lives." As Vanity Fair notes, Manson admitted in 2009 that he had fantasies about murdering Wood. Nevertheless, he took to Instagram to deny Wood's accusations, claiming that he has only ever had consensual relationships.

Following Wood's allegations, more than a dozen women, including "Game of Thrones" actor Esmé Bianco and model Sarah McNeilly, have accused Manson of abuse, per Rolling Stone. In 2023, an anonymous woman claimed that the musician sexually assaulted her when she was just 16 and is currently pursuing legal action, per People.

If you or someone you know is dealing with domestic abuse, you can call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1−800−799−7233. You can also find more information, resources, and support at their website.

If you or anyone you know has been a victim of sexual assault, help is available. Visit the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network website or contact RAINN's National Helpline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).

Josh Homme has been accused of domestic violence

As frontman of Queens of the Stone Age and drummer for Eagles of Death Metal, Josh Homme has wowed fans and critics alike with his versatility, in turn being dubbed the Ginger Elvis. For many years, Homme and his former wife, The Distillers' frontwoman Brody Dalle, appeared the perfect rock power couple. However, Dalle would soon accuse Homme of shocking crimes.

In 2021, Dalle and her children filed a restraining order against Homme, alleging that he often became violent while inebriated, per TMZ. The couple's sons, Orrin and Wolf, were allegedly fearful that Homme would hurt them and their mother. The boys claimed, among other things, that Homme fat-shamed them, hit them, and grabbed their genitals. Although the request was denied, the couple's daughter, Camille, was granted a restraining order against her father, as NME reports. Dalle was later sentenced to community service for refusing to let Homme see his children. "I don't believe anyone should go to jail or pick up trash for protecting her children," she told Rolling Stone. "As a mother, I will always put my children first and protect them at all costs."

The following year, Dalle testified against her ex-husband in court, alleging that he head-butted her so violently that she blacked out, and also threatened to kill her, per The Guardian. "'I've been thinking about wanting to kill you, and if I killed you, no one would know,'" Dalle recalled Homme allegedly telling her. Homme denies all abuse claims.

If you or someone you know is dealing with domestic abuse, you can call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1−800−799−7233. You can also find more information, resources, and support at their website.

Peter Buck allegedly assaulted airplane staff

R.E.M. were famed for being the wholesome nice guys of alternative rock. This is, after all, the group who treated Homer Simpson to a tofu turkey dinner in exchange for dissuading him against hunting. But back in their heyday, the band was not immune to some debauched rock 'n' roll shenanigans.

In 2001, Buck was on a British Airways flight from Seattle to London when he allegedly instigated an air rage incident. According to Rolling Stone, he was accused of assaulting two cabin crew members. He also reportedly sprayed airplane staff with yogurt, as The Guardian reports. "I thought he was going to throw it at me so I grabbed hold of his wrist ... at that point the container of yogurt seemed to explode and cover me from head to foot," a cabin crew member recalled. "[The Stewardess] Holly Ward was also splattered." And, in the R.E.M. equivalent of "don't you know who I am," he allegedly told the plane's captain, "You are just a f***ing captain and I am R.E.M."

In court, Buck claimed that he couldn't remember the incident due to mixing prescription medication with alcohol, though he did apologize for his reported behavior. "I am sorry for the incident and of course I am embarrassed about the whole thing," Buck said in a statement through R.E.M.'s manager, per Rolling Stone. He was eventually cleared of all charges, leading to condemnation from the pilots' union.  

Twiggy Ramirez was accused of rape

Twiggy Ramirez was Marilyn Manson's bassist throughout the '90s and 2000s. By Manson's own admission, Ramirez allegedly exploited and humiliated women (though Manson stopped short of condemning his bandmate). As Manson recalls in his autobiography (via Louder Sound), Ramirez apparently once urinated on a deaf girl who ended up backstage with the band.

In 2017, Ramirez was accused of rape by fellow musician Jessicka Addams, frontwoman of Jack Off Jill, per Variety. According to Addams, she dated Ramirez in the '90s and he frequently subjected her to domestic violence and sexual assault. However, she was warned by her record label that there would be dire consequences if she came forward. "The label blatantly feared the big machine behind Marilyn Manson would use their power to destroy not only Jack Off Jill, but my name, Jessicka, as well," she claimed. "The pressure and guilt of the inevitable repercussions of my rape story affecting my band's livelihood, happiness and success kept me silent for years." He was subsequently fired from the Manson band. In a statement, Ramirez did not deny the allegations. "I do not condone non-consensual sex of any kind ... If I have caused anyone pain I apologize and truly regret it," he said, per Rolling Stone.

In her documentary "Phoenix Rising" (via Yahoo!), Evan Rachel Wood suggested that Ramirez brought out the worst in Manson, with the latter's infliction of domestic violence coinciding with Ramirez re-joining the band in 2008.

If you or anyone you know has been a victim of sexual assault, help is available. Visit the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network website or contact RAINN's National Helpline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).

Tommy Lee allegedly abused Pamela Anderson

Thanks to her recent Netflix documentary, there's been much interest in Pamela Anderson's fascinating life of late. In particular, her volatile relationship with her first husband, Mötley Crüe drummer Tommy Lee, has come under renewed scrutiny. According to Anderson, Lee was a jealous and sometimes violent husband, with his erratic behavior being the catalyst for the couple's divorce in 1998.

In her memoir, "Love, Pamela," Anderson recalls an instance in which Lee physically assaulted her. According to Anderson, Lee was lamenting that his wife showed the couple's sons more attention than him and proceeded to attack her. At the time, she was cradling the couple's baby, Dylan, while their toddler, Brandon, held onto her leg. "Tommy ripped Brandon off me and threw me and Dylan into the wall," she wrote (via ET Online). "I was so scared he was hurt — he was screaming and he was only seven weeks old." Although she said that the divorce was one of the hardest things she ever went through in her life, she conceded that separating from Lee was vital in order to protect her children.

Subsequently, Lee was sentenced to six months in jail for spousal abuse, per the Los Angeles Times. "What I see here is a very clear–very disturbing, in my judgment–pattern of conduct in which otherwise resolvable matters are handled by violence," the judge warned when handing the musician his sentence. In an interview with Fox, Lee claimed that he didn't beat Anderson, but rather grabbed and shook her.

If you or someone you know is dealing with domestic abuse, you can call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1−800−799−7233. You can also find more information, resources, and support at their website.

Did Fred Durst start a riot?

Woodstock '99 has gone down as one of the most disastrous music festivals in history. While the original '60s Woodstock was ostensibly a celebration of peace and love, the musical landscape had changed significantly by the '90s. With the advent of nu-metal and a prevalent bro culture, Woodstock '99 was a recipe for disaster.

Much memed Limp Bizkit frontman Fred Durst has long been blamed for inciting a riot, which was allegedly the catalyst for the subsequent unrest that plagued the festival. According to The Guardian, Durst was performing his band's hit track "Break Stuff" when he allegedly encouraged his fans to tear down the plywood around the PA tower, on which they then began to crowdsurf. Durst later claimed that he was not responsible for what followed, but those who witnessed the ensuing carnage say otherwise. According to onlooker Brian Hiatt, Durst told fans to "tear s*** up" and they dutifully obliged, per The Ringer. Woodstock promoter John Scher made similar claims. "You had a cheerleader in Fred Durst, who, if I haven't said enough times, is a complete a**hole," Scher explained.

It should be noted, however, that the riot in which the festival ended did not occur until the following day. Speaking to Variety in 2019, Durst argued that he was used as a scapegoat. "It's easy to point the finger and blame [us], but they hired us for what we do — and all we did is what we do," he reasoned.

Axl Rose has been accused of domestic violence and statutory rape

Guns N' Roses frontman Axl Rose has faced numerous accusations of violence against women and girls. In his book "Last of the Giants: The True Story of Guns N' Roses," an excerpt of which was published by Medium, music journalist Mick Wall recalls an instance in which Rose was accused of statutory rape against a 15-year-old girl in 1985. As Wall notes, Guns N' Roses guitarist Slash referenced the incident in his own autobiography, in which he claimed that Rose had sex with the girl. 

The girl was found running naked through Los Angeles and the LAPD swiftly began searching for Rose, who hid behind an amp when the police arrived. He was never arrested for his alleged crime, a turn of events that pleased the rocker immensely. "While the cops are out there harassing everybody, asking their stupid questions, I'm with this girl behind the amp and we start going at it," Rose apparently boasted. "That was the rush! I got away with it! It was really exciting."

In addition to statutory rape claims, Rose has been accused of domestic violence. In 1994, his ex-wife, Erin Everly, alleged that he had subjected her to relentless abuse for years, subsequently filing a lawsuit against him, per the Associated Press. She claimed that Rose beat her, injected her with drugs while she was asleep, and sexually assaulted her. The case was settled out of court, according to Blabbermouth.

If you or someone you know may be the victim of child abuse, please contact the Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline at 1-800-4-A-Child (1-800-422-4453) or contact their live chat services.

If you or someone you know is dealing with domestic abuse, you can call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1−800−799−7233. You can also find more information, resources, and support at their website.

Varg Vikernes is a convicted murderer and alleged white supremacist

Norwegian black metal rose to prominence in the early '90s as a more extreme alternative to traditional heavy and thrash metal. The enfant terrible of the scene was Varg Vikernes, the man behind Burzum. From the outset of his fame (or infamy), Vikernes was accused of multiple crimes.

In the early '90s, he was accused of being responsible for a series of church burnings in his native Norway, per "The Re-Enchantment of the West, Vol 2." Indeed, Vikernes did name one of his albums "Aske" ("Ashes") and used a photo of a burnt church for its cover, which many deemed an apparent taunting of his accusers. 

Then, in 1993, Vikernes stabbed his rival, fellow musician Euronymous of the band Mayhem, multiple times and was charged with murder, per Ultimate Guitar. At the time, he claimed he was acting in self-defense. Discussing legal proceedings with Burning Ground (via Burzum.org) in 1994, Vikernes asserted that the trial was part of a Jewish conspiracy. He was convicted of murder and spent 16 years in prison, the maximum sentence in Norway, per The Guardian. Famously, he grinned in court when his sentence was read out. Since his release in 2009, he has been accused of further crimes. In 2014, Vikernes, who has long been labeled a white supremacist, was convicted of inciting racial hatred in France and given a six month suspended sentence, per The Guardian. In an interview with Dagbladet, he openly admitted to being a racist.

If you or a loved one has experienced a hate crime, contact the VictimConnect Hotline by phone at 1-855-4-VICTIM or by chat for more information or assistance in locating services to help. If you or a loved one are in immediate danger, call 911.

Mark Kozelek allegedly sexually assaulted numerous women

As frontman of Red House Painters and Sun Kil Moon, Mark Kozelek has been an indie rock mainstay since the early '90s. The musician is famed for his confessional song writing, in which he freely admits to being responsible for some truly abhorrent behavior (for which he apologizes through song).

Despite the confessional and apologetic nature of his lyrics, Kozelek seemingly hasn't learned from his past actions and continues to court controversy. At a concert in London in 2015, he called out Laura Snapes, a journalist for The Guardian, declaring, "Laura Snapes totally wants to f*** me / get in line, b****... Laura Snapes totally wants to have my babies," per The Independent. The remarks were made in response to some questions that Snapes previously asked an irate Kozelek in an interview. Subsequently, there have been claims that Kozelek's apparent misogyny has resulted in violence against women.

In 2020, Pitchfork published an exposé on Kozelek after three women alleged that he sexually abused them. One of the women, speaking under the pseudonym Andrea, was just 19 when she met the musician, who was 47. Andrea accused the songwriter of exposing himself and pressuring her into non-consensual sex. "He focused on my age a lot ... He kept asking me to say how old I was... and he called himself 'daddy,'" she claimed. The following year, Pitchfork reported that seven more women had come forward with allegations of sexual assault against Kozelek. He denies all the claims.

If you or anyone you know has been a victim of sexual assault, help is available. Visit the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network website or contact RAINN's National Helpline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).

Michael Gira has been accused of rape

Experimental noise rock band Swans, fronted by the moody baritone Michael Gira, have been around since the '80s. The band found recognition in 1996 with the release of their breakthrough album "Soundtracks for the Blind," which was hailed among Terrorizer's "100 Most Important Albums Of The Nineties." A curmudgeonly figure, Gira is known for penning lyrics of a darkly sexual and violent nature. According to one of his erstwhile collaborators, such lyrical content is reflective of his behavior behind the scenes.

In 2016, the musician Larkin Grimm, who worked with Gira in the late 2000s, accused him of sexual misconduct. In a since deleted Facebook post (via The Guardian), Grimm alleged that Gia kept pressuring her for sex; when she declined, he allegedly raped her when she was passed out and drunk. On his own Facebook account, Gira staunchly denied the claims. His wife, Jennifer, asserted that Grimm was mentally unstable and lying. He then made an official statement, obtained by Pitchfork, in which he admitted that he did have sex with Grimm, but insisted that the encounter was consensual.

However, Grimm hit back against such claims, suggesting that Gira's statement was an admission of guilt. "This is a perfect example of why we need to have education about consent," she explained. "In a gentlemanly move he admits the act happened but cannot conceive of himself as a rapist. Thank you Michael Gira for your honesty ... Unfortunately, this was still rape. I said no to you many times before."

If you or anyone you know has been a victim of sexual assault, help is available. Visit the Rape, Abuse & Incest National Network website or contact RAINN's National Helpline at 1-800-656-HOPE (4673).

Tripp Eisen was convicted of abusing a minor

Tripp Eisen found fame in the '90s as a member of nu-metal bands Dope and Static-X, as well as the gothic horror group Murderdolls. His time with Static-X came to an end when he was accused of shocking crimes against children.

In 2005, a then 39-year-old Eisen was arrested for allegedly assaulting two underage girls, per MTV. According to prosecutors, he had met one of the girls, aged just 14, on the suspiciously titled website Find-a-Freek, where he expressed an interest in meeting elementary school children and purported to be a 31-year-old Static-X fan. He was accused of luring her away from home, kidnapping her, and committing statutory rape. The musician was found guilty of child sex abuse and sentenced to one year in prison, per Rolling Stone. In 2008, he was sent back to jail after violating his parole, per Blabbermouth.

In the late 2010s, Eisen attempted to reintroduce himself into the rock scene, leading to a major backlash. In an angry Facebook statement (via Metal Injection), Eisen was condemned by his former Dope bandmate, Edsel Dope. "You were a 40 Year old creep, who was arrested for having sexual relations with multiple 14 year old fan girls. DEPLORABLE!" Dope wrote. In a lengthy response, Eisen insisted that he didn't know the girls were underage. "I didn't target underage girls as I was unaware of the ages of the girls ... This is me taking full responsibility for doing the wrong thing," he stated, per Metal Sucks.

If you or someone you know may be the victim of child abuse, please contact the Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline at 1-800-4-A-Child (1-800-422-4453) or contact their live chat services.

Chris Robinson allegedly spat on a woman and stole beer

The Black Crowes are synonymous with early '90s southern bluesy rock. Frontman Chris Robinson had a brief run-in with the law when visiting a 7-Eleven in Denver in 1991. In classic rock star fashion, he became irate after a woman didn't recognize him, per the Orlando Sentinel. He proceeded to fat-shame her, bizarrely remarking that she would know who his band were if she didn't eat so much junk food — an insult that remains as inexplicable now as the fateful day it was uttered.

According to Rolling Stone, he also stole beer from the store, though, rather than making a concerted effort to commit theft, he was apparently so intoxicated (and presumably indignant that someone had the audacity to not recognize him) that he simply forgot to pay. Thereafter, he apparently spat on the woman. He was charged with assault and disturbing the peace, though the former charge was later dropped. Accordingly, he was sentenced to six months' probation and had to pay a $53 fine, though no doubt this hardly burnt the pocket of the millionaire rock star.

Speaking to The Independent in 2008, Robinson acknowledged that he had mellowed since his early, hedonistic days as a rock star. "Life is different than it was in the Nineties ... Part of getting older is realizing that you can integrate all these different areas of your life," he explained, "rather than the adolescent mindset, which for me lasted a long time, which says, 'It's all or nothing.'"

Scott Stapp was accused of domestic violence and threatening to kill Obama

As frontman of the Christian rock band Creed, Scott Stapp found immense commercial success in the '90s, but has been much maligned for his apparent carbon copy imitation of Pearl Jam's Eddie Vedder. Despite his devout Christian faith, Stapp has allegedly behaved in a manner not befitting a pious individual.

In 2007, he was arrested on suspicion of domestic violence, per E!. His wife, beauty queen Jaclyn Nesheiwat, called the cops after he returned home late and allegedly became violent. "He got angrier and allegedly threw a glass bottle of Orangina, almost hitting her in the right side of her face," Paul Miller, a spokesman for the Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office, told the outlet. "She was in fear at that point that he might do something else." According to the 911 call, Nesheiwat feared that Stapp was inebriated and on drugs, and expressed her concerns that there were a number of guns in the home, per Spin. The charges were dropped after Stapp agreed to attend an anger management program, per Today.

In 2014, Stapp generated headlines again when his wife and sister-in-law alleged that he had escaped from a psychiatric facility and was spewing dangerous conspiracies. In a 911 call obtained by TMZ, his sister-in-law said that Stapp was plotting to assassinate President Obama, believing that the CIA had assigned him with the murderous task. The Secret Service subsequently investigated the threat, per People.

If you or someone you know is dealing with domestic abuse, you can call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1−800−799−7233. You can also find more information, resources, and support at their website.