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Shaun White Apologises After Calling Sexual Harassment Allegations From Former Drummer “Gossip”

Snowboarder Shaun White has apologised after dismissing sexual harassment allegations from the former drummer of his band Bad Things as “gossip”, following his gold medal-winning performance at the Winter Olympics.

Speaking with reporters in Pyeongchang, South Korea yesterday, White was asked about allegations put forward by drummer Lena Zawaideh in 2016, as part of a civil suit which was settled privately in 2017.

Zawaideh had accused White of sending sexually explicit and graphic images to her, forcing her to watch sexually disturbing videos, making unwanted physical interactions and making vulgar sexual remarks. White admitted to the sending the text messages included in the case, but disputed allegations of harassment.

Asked about the allegations following his half-pipe victory yesterday, White called the claims “gossip”.

“Honestly, I’m here to talk about the Olympics, not gossip,” he said. “I am who I am, and I’m proud of who I am and my friends love me and vouch for me and I think that stands on its own.”

During a later appearance on the US TODAY show, White apologised, saying he had used a “poor choice of words to describe such a sensitive subject in the world today”.

“I’ve grown as a person over the years, and it’s amazing — you’ve known me for a long time now — it’s amazing how life works in twists and turns and lessons learned,” he said.

“So every experience in my life, I feel like it’s taught me a lesson and I definitely feel like I’m a more changed person than I was when I was younger. And I’m proud of who I am today.”

White is expected to make his way to Australia in August for the first-ever Australian edition of his AIR + STYLE music and extreme sports festival.

Bad Things released their self-titled debut album in 2014.

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