Singer-songwriter Bob Dylan is facing a lawsuit from a woman who claims she was sexually abused and drugged by the musician at his Chelsea Hotel apartment in 1965. The woman, only identified as J.C., filed the lawsuit in Manhattan Supreme Court on Friday. Dylan has denied the allegations through his spokesman.
Dylan, now 80, allegedly used his star status to groom her by gaining her trust as "part of his plan to sexually molest and abuse" her, the court documents obtained by the New York Post read. J.C., who is 65 and lives in Connecticut now, claims the alleged abuse happened over a six-week period in April and May 1965, when Dylan "befriended and established an emotional connection with the plaintiff." The "Blowin' in the Wind" singer allegedly built a connection to the plaintiff 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," the lawsuit claims.
The alleged abuse happened "multiple" times, with some incidents at the Chelsea Hotel, where Dylan had an apartment in 1965. J.C. claims she has suffered long-lasting emotional effects that continue to this day. She has suffered from depression, humiliation, and anxiety, and has sought medical treatment. The effects of the alleged assault "are of a permanent and lasting natures and have incapacitated plaintiff from attending her regular activities." J.C. accused Dylan of "assault, battery, false imprisonment and infliction of emotional distress," according to the Post. She is seeking unspecified damages and wants the case to go to trial before a jury. "This 56-year-old claim is untrue and will be vigorously defended," Dylan's spokesperson told the Post.
"The complaint speaks for itself," J.C.'s lawyer, Daniel Isaacs, told the Post. "She provided a lot of detailed information regarding the time in question that leaves no doubt that she was with him in the apartment during the time in question." He said the details were confirmed with the "Best available research." Isaacs did not explain why J.C. waited to file a lawsuit now. The lawsuit was filed on Friday, just before the closure of the New York Child Victims' Act look-back window, which allowed child abuse victims to file lawsuits against their attackers, no matter how old the allegations were.
Dylan recently won an unrelated case in Manhattan Supreme Court. Claudia Levy, the widow of Dylan's "Hurricane" collaborator Jacques Levy, filed a $7.75 million lawsuit against Dylan, accusing him of cutting Levy's estate out of royalties from their collaborations when Dylan sold his song catalog to Universal Music for $300 million last year. The judge dismissed the lawsuit in July.