• Thu. May 23rd, 2024

Woman sues Jermaine Jackson over alleged sexual assault in 1988


A woman is suing Jermaine Jackson in Los Angeles for allegedly sexually assaulting her at her home in 1988 while also alleging that Motown music founder Berry Gordy did nothing to help her when she told him what happened.

Rita Butler Barrett’s Van Nuys Superior Court lawsuit alleges sexual battery and assault and negligence. She seeks unspecified compensatory and punitive damages.

A representative for the 69-year-old sibling of the late Michael Jackson could not be immediately reached.

Barrett met Jackson when she worked as  musician’s contractor, as a member of the Musician’s Union and through family connections to Gordy, who was in a business relationship with the plaintiff’s husband, the suit states. Gordy, now 94, is not a defendant in the suit.

Jackson allegedly went to Barrett’s home in the spring of 1988 without notice, entered and sexually assaulted her with “force and violence,” the suit states.

Barrett feared for her life and the next day told Gordy what allegedly happened, but the music mogul “withheld and concealed the acts, further perpetuating the coverup and allowing Mr. Gordy, defendant Jackson and others in the business relationship to continue to reap profits derived from Mr. Jackson’s work and reputation for years to come,” the suit alleges.

Gordy soon thereafter sold Motown “for great profit,” the suit states.


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