Last month, former music industry executive Ronald Savage accused New York hip-hop pioneer Afrika Bambaataa of multiple counts of sexual abuse. Savage, who worked closely with Bambaataa and his Zulu Nation group, claimed he was molested as a teenager at least five times in the 1980s.
“I want him to know how much he damaged me growing up,” Savage, now 50, told the Daily News. “I was just a child. Why did he take my innocence away?”
In a press statement, Bambaataa promptly refuted Savage’s claims, saying, “These allegations are baseless and are a cowardly attempt to tarnish my reputation and legacy in hip-hop at this time.
Now, in a new interview given this week — his first since Savage’s accusations came to light — Bambaataa continued to maintain his innocence. “I never abused nobody,” he told Fox 5 NY’s Lisa Evers. “I didn’t touch this brother whatsoever.” He also suggested that there may be a hidden agenda behind the allegations, saying it could be some kind of shakedown. “You don’t know what many of these people are thinking, what is behind it.”
Charles Tucker Jr., Bambaataa’s attorney, also appeared in the segment and confirmed that no criminal charges have been filed against his client. He also noted that no payouts or settlements have been brokered between Bambaataa and his accuser.
For his part, Savage told Fox 5 that he is not backing down from his accusations and that he believes that Bambaataa has more victims out there. He also again slammed New York’s statute of limitations, which prevents victims of child abuse from pressing charges after they turn 23.
Watch the Fox 5 segment above (via DDotOmen).