A civil lawsuit filed in Tennessee federal court — first reported by Variety and independently obtained by Billboard — on May 11, 2023, accused Jimmie Allen of sexual assault. A Jane Doe, who was a day-to-day manager at Allen’s former management company Wide Open Music, alleged that the country singer had “harassed” and “sexually abused her” over 18 months from 2020 to 2022, and that she was fired after she complained.
“Plaintiff expressed in words and actions that Jimmie Allen’s conduct was unwelcome, including pushing him away, sitting where he could not reach her, telling him she was uncomfortable and no, and crying uncontrollably,” her attorneys stated in the complaint. “However, Allen made clear that plaintiff’s job was dependent on her staying silent about his conduct.”
Allen responded to the allegations in a statement shared with Billboard, admitting to a sexual relationship with his accuser, but denied all allegations of wrongdoing. “I’ve worked incredibly hard to build my career, and I intend to mount a vigorous defense to her claims and take all other legal action necessary to protect my reputation,” he said.
The complaint also names management firm Wide Open Music and founder Ash Bowers as defendants, claiming they did not do enough to protect their employee from Allen’s alleged abusive behavior. The lawsuit alleges that after she revealed she had been “raped and sexually abused” by Allen, Wide Open Music and Bowers fired her in retaliation.
In his own statement sent to Billboard, Bowers strongly denied Jane Doe’s assertion that her position was terminated in retaliation. He said that Wide Open Music learned of Allen’s abuse on Oct. 4, 2022, and “immediately ended our professional relationship” at that point, and that “any assertion she ever raised the existence of a sexual or physical relationship” with the country singer before then “is patently and objectively false.”
Since the allegations against Allen surfaced in the lawsuit, he has been suspended by his label, dropped from a performance slot at CMA Fest and more. See the timeline of the fallout since the lawsuit was filed against him.
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