Veteran heavy metal quartet Megadeth have released a statement regarding sexual misconduct allegations against bassist David Ellefson, who recently denied that he was “grooming” an underaged girl via online messages and videos.
“We are aware of the recent statements regarding David Ellefson, and are watching developments closely,” the band wrote in a statement posted on social media accounts on late Monday. “As it relates to creativity and business, we are all familiar with one another. However, there are clearly aspects of David’s private life that he has kept to himself.
“As this situation unfolds, it is important that all voices be heard clearly and respectfully. We look forward to the truth coming to light,” it concludes.
The claims emerged after explicit screenshots and videos began to circulate on social media, with some commenters claiming the female in the videos was underaged.
— Megadeth (@Megadeth) May 11, 2021
In a statement on his Instagram account, which has since been made private, Ellefson claimed the clips were “private, adult interactions that were taken out of context and manipulated to inflict maximum damage to my reputation, my career and family,” according to the NME. The clips were “released with ill intention by a third party who was not authorized to have them or share them. While certainly embarrassing, I want to address it as openly and honestly as possible.”
Ellefson also shared a screenshot of a statement purported to be from the woman in the clips, who said she was not underaged at the time and that the account of the incident had been taken out of context. The woman also said in the statement that she “was always a consenting adult… In the end, it was all consensual and all online.”
Ellefson co-founded Megadeth in 1983 with frontman/guitarist Dave Mustaine, who had just been ejected from Metallica. He remained with the group until 2002 and returned in 2010.