CONTENT WARNING: The following article discusses allegations of sexual assault
LA experimental hip-hop producer The Gaslamp Killer has been accused via Twitter of drugging and raping two women in 2013.
One of his alleged victims, a woman using the handle @chelseaelaynne, has aired the serious allegations on Twitter, claiming she’s been “silently suffering over this for many years”.
“The Gaslamp Killer drugged and raped my best friend and myself 4 years ago,” she writes, alongside a lengthy account of her ordeal, in which she accuses the producer of drugging her and her friend’s drinks during a hotel party four years ago, before having “non-consensual sex with both of us while we were completely incapacitated”.
“I remember his disgusting body on top of me and being so scared I couldn’t speak,” she continues. “I felt like I was in a nightmare and couldn’t scream or call for help or move. I have no idea the details of what he did to us.”
She further alleges that she “[threw] up all night and had flu-like symptoms the entire day following,” as a result of the drug The Gaslamp Killer allegedly slipped into her drink.
In later tweets, Chelsea further alleges that The Gaslamp Killer blocked her on social media and then attempted to contact her friend via DM to “cover up” what happened, writing: “Can we please talk right now? Your friend is accusing me of rape and I need you to back me up here.”
The producer, real name William Bensussen, has since responded to the accusations, also via Twitter, arguing that “Chelsea’s version of this story is not true”.
“I think it’s important that I be a part of this conversation. Firstly, I want it to be known that I would never hurt or endanger a woman. I would never drug a woman, and I would never put anyone in a situation where they were not in control, or take anything that they weren’t offering. Consent is intimate, and has left room for people who were not present to wonder what happened. In this case consent was between three people, in the form of an offer which I accepted. Allegations carry a lot of weight on social media these days, and the bravery of women who expose their stories can create necessary dialogue that leads to real change. But Chelsea’s version of this story is not true.”
He adds: “I am thankful that I have been contacted by witnesses and my roommates at the time, in support. Please know that while I am shocked, I take this all very seriously. It is all so sensitive and needs to be treated with the utmost care and attention.”
It’s important to note that all of this is problematically unfolding outside the realm of the justice system, and at the time of writing it’s unclear whether Chelsea is intending to pursue legal action against the producer or not.
However, as a result of the public allegations, The Gaslamp Killer has now been booted from his regular gig at LA DJ showcase, Low End Theory.
“Low End Theory is deeply saddened to learn of the allegations made against William Bensussen aka The Gaslamp Killer,” organisers write in a statement (via Rolling Stone). “Given the nature of the allegations made, we have made the decision to part ways with William.”
Meanwhile, the Low End Theory showcase that was scheduled to host the producer as part of Brooklyn’s Electronic Music Festival has also been cancelled completely.
“Brooklyn Electronic Music Festival has chosen to cancel the Low End Theory show,” organisers announced via Facebook. “This is not the appropriate time to present these artists in light of the allegations that were made last night.”
While The Gaslamp Killer’s old record label Brainfeeder has also been quick to distance themselves from the scandal.
“The allegations against the Gaslight [sic] Killer come as a complete shock,” the label writes, pointing out that the producer hasn’t been on their roster for five years. “Brainfeeder has always been a safe, inclusive space for artists of all types and we do not condone assault in any shape or form.”
Chelsea has since tweeted “a sincere thank you for all the support [other alleged victim] raean and i have received”.
“Telling our story is the first step in moving on,” she continues. “Was a surreal and terrifying experience to watch rape culture unfold in my mentions and in his statement. I am so filled with love and admiration for the women who have confided in me the past few hours. there is power in solidarity.”
Read the full statements from all parties below.
If you need assistance, 1800 RESPECT – the National Sexual Assault, Domestic and Family Violence Counselling Service — can be reached on 1800 737 732, while Lifeline can be reached on 13 11 14.
— G L K (@GASLAMPKILLER) October 13, 2017
holy shit hes already trying to cover it up pic.twitter.com/B8H4UoFjyb
— chelsea (@chelseaelaynne) October 13, 2017