Jermaine Jackson, the older brother of Michael Jackson and founding member of the Jackson 5, has been hit with a sexual assault lawsuit. According to Rolling Stone, Jackson is accused of sexually assaulting a woman in the late 1980s.
More Details Regarding The Lawsuit & Allegations Against Jermaine Jackson
According to the outlet, the lawsuit against Jackson was filed on Wednesday, December 28. The plaintiff, Rita Barrett, alleges that the 69-year-old sexually assaulted her in her home in 1988.
The suit alleges that Barrett met Jackson through work as a music contractor and her relationship with Berry Gordy, a friend of her husband’s. At the time, Gordy was the founder of Motown Records, which launched in 1959 and signed the Jackson 5 in 1968, per Blackpast.
The group was composed of Jermaine Jackson and his brothers.
According to the lawsuit, Jackson showed up at Barrett’s home unannounced and allegedly committed the act with “force and violence.”
Barrett allegedly “feared for her life.”
“Defendant Jackson forced himself into Plaintiff’s home, and with force and violence sexually assaulted Plaintiff,” the suit asserts, per Rolling Stone. “During the assault, Plaintiff, a woman of faith prayed to God for help. During the assault, Plaintiff feared for her life. After the assault and when Defendant Jackson was satiated, he left the residence.”
Various companies owned by Jackson, such as Jermaine L. Jackson Music Productions and Work Records, were also reportedly listed as defendants in Barrett’s suit.
Additionally, the cause of Barrett’s filing has been attributed to “sexual assault, battery, sexual battery, and negligence.”
“[Barrett] suffered severe emotional, physical, and psychological injury, including humiliation, shame, guilt, economic loss, economic capacity, and permanent emotional distress,” the lawsuit asserts, per PEOPLE.
Furthermore, Barrett is reportedly seeking compensation for “unspecified damages.”
“Rita Barrett suffered an egregious and violent sexual assault,” Jeff Anderson, the plaintiff’s attorney, explained to Rolling Stone. “This is about her power and the declaration of it when she learned something could be done under the law, and she found the strength and support to find us and is now standing up for herself and others.”
Motown Records Founder Berry Gordy Is Named In The Lawsuit
Berry Gordy has also been named in Barrett’s lawsuit. However, the 94-year-old has not been listed as a defendant.
Barrett alleges that the day after the alleged sexual assault occurred, she reported the incident to Gordy. However, the Motown founder allegedly decided to protect Jackson due to financial interests.
To note, Entertainment Tonight has reported that Jackson was married to Gordy’s daughter Hazel between 1973 and 1988.
“[Berry Gordy] was uniquely situated to both report Defendant Jackson’s acts and to aid plaintiff during her time of trauma,” the suit reads, per the outlet. “Instead, Mr. Gordy 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.”
According to Rolling Stone, neither Jackson’s nor Gordy’s representative has responded to the outlet’s request for comment.
The outlet adds that Barrett’s suit was filed under California’s AB2777 Bill, which “temporarily waives the statute of limitations on some civil claims related to sexual misconduct.”
Furthermore, the bill is similar to New York’s Adult Survivors Act, which allowed singer Casandra Ventura to file a sexual assault, abuse, and trafficking lawsuit against Diddy in November.
Keep scrolling to watch a recent episode of ‘TSR Investigates‘ and learn more about New York’s Adult Survivors Act and other celebrities who have become the defendants of similar lawsuits.