Alabama songwriter claims he was assaulted by Georgian club Eddie’s Attic; disputed details
A weekend confrontation between South Alabama singer-songwriter Kristy Lee and another artist has led to allegations of assault and homophobia and an online storm of threats and allegations from fans of both artists.
Lee and country musician Heath Sanders both performed on Saturday at Eddie’s Attic, a venue in Decatur, Georgia, with a 30-year history as a hotspot for emerging singer-songwriters. Advertisements for the event showed Lee’s start time at 7:00 p.m. and Sanders’ start time at 9:00 p.m. By all accounts, the incident took place in a “green room” backstage between sets.
Lee posted late Saturday night that something had happened after the show, that she was “still in shock” and that she would say more on Sunday. On Sunday, she posted that Sanders had “blinded” her in the green room. She said she was strangled, repeatedly punched on the back of the head and that Sanders used multiple homophobic slurs against her.
The post outraged Lee’s sizable fan base, which extends far beyond the Mobile region; some fans have started posting comments on Sanders’ social media accounts, and some have said they are actively bringing the accusation to the attention of venues where Sanders will or could play in the future. Sanders’ supporters responded in kind, with some alleging Lee had been the abuser.
After locking down comments on his Facebook page, Sanders offered his account of what happened: a verbal argument had escalated, he said, and he “didn’t react more than defend herself and remove me from the situation as she pushed and then tried to spit on me, and bite me. He denied using any kind of insult and said he was strongly opposed to any man lays his hand on a woman.
Further details come from a police incident report filed by Constable J. Velez. It was obtained on Tuesday by AL.com.
According to the incident report, Lee called the police after leaving the scene. Officer Velez met her in her hotel room and then interviewed Sanders at the club. (Note: In the report, Lee and Sanders are both identified by first names that are different from their stage names, which are used in this story.)
In the report, Lee and Sanders both said the incident started when Lee’s guitar was moved off the stage by someone affiliated with Sanders. From there, the accounts diverge.
Lee told the officer she apologized for delaying Sanders’ set but criticized the label for moving her guitar. She then tried to retrieve her guitar case only to find herself stranded. She told the officer that “Sanders hit her on the side of the face at least three times, causing the bandana to fall over her eyes. She said he had taken her by the throat on the sofa. [Lee] did not know how the incident ended and believed someone had intervened. She grabbed her things and went to the lobby and told the manager on duty.
The officer said Lee’s left ear was red but no other marks were seen. Lee “didn’t remember what Sanders said, but said he was very homophobic,” the officer wrote. Lee is gay, as are much of his fan base.
Sanders, like Lee, told the officer that Lee apologized for delaying his set, then criticized him for moving the guitar and tried to retrieve it from where it was behind him. . “Sanders said all she had to do was ask him to pass it to her and he would have done it.” In Sanders’ account to the officer, Lee approached him using profanity. He stood up and Lee “grabbed his shirt with both hands above his chest, which he considered assault.” Sanders responded by typing [Lee] by the neck and pushing her against the wall. Sanders said he didn’t hit her, but he pushed her back by the neck and collar of the shirt and said, “Ma’am, calm down or I’ll change your life.” At that point, his guitarist, Casey Paraday stepped in and told him to stop, he said. He let go of Lee and told him to leave, which she did.
Paraday, the only other person in the room, gave the officer a similar account to Sanders, claiming that after Lee tried to push Sanders out of his way, he had grabbed her “and had him. put it down and kept it there “.
According to the officer’s report, Sanders is several inches taller and 40 pounds heavier than Lee.
A site staff member told Officer Lee was visibly upset after the incident and had a red mark on the side of his face. The staff member drew the officer’s attention to a black curtain separating the lobby from the green room, blocking the view from outside.
Some Sanders supporters have alleged there was a cellphone video showing at least glimpse of the showdown. However, Decatur Police Chief Scott Richards said Tuesday afternoon that no one had provided investigators with a video.
Constable Velez concluded that “due to conflicting statements a primary attacker could not be determined.” Another agent told local media, Decaturish.com, that the police were still investigating.
On Tuesday afternoon, the site released a brief statement saying it “was cooperating with an active police investigation and therefore could not legally comment.”
“Eddie’s Attic has been around for almost 30 years. During this time, we have offered the audience a venue that not only brings together some of the best musical talent in Atlanta, but also a warm, safe, comfortable and inclusive venue where the focus is on the ‘magic’ that music can bring. to each of our lives, ”the statement said. “We intend to continue this philosophy and support the LGBTQ + community by only booking artists who are aware and support our inclusive beliefs. “
Lee told fans that the theater operators told him that Sanders would not be allowed to return. The declaration of the place did not confirm this.
In addition to Decaturish, the incident received attention on at least one country music news site, tastedepays.com.