No Warning, Excuse for Odd Future 'Assault', Witness Says
The photographer who shot images of Odd Future member Left Brain getting aggressive towards members of the press at the Voodoo Experience over the weekend told Billboard.com the rapper "exploded" into a vile rant, and without warning, struck two photographers, including a woman.
Responding to an earlier statement from Odd Future's rep that the group told "photographers to clear out multiple times" before Left Brain (real name Vyron Turner) "took a swipe at a few cameras, NOT people," photo journalist Skip Bolen remembers a different series of events.
"Turner immediately exploded into his vile hatred of photographers with a long string of obscenities, and then hit one male photographer first -- breaking his Nikon 70-200mm lens," he said in a statement. "A split second later [he] hit the female photographer Amy Harris in front of me -- it was clearly assault and battery."
Bolen added that regarding the dispute on whether Left Brain took an actual swipe at Harris or just her camera, "they are both connected when a photographer is shooting photos -- and after the incident, Amy Harris' face was red."
During a performance at New Orleans' Voodoo Experience on Sunday (Oct. 30), Left Brain reportedly threw water and shoved photographers when fellow member Tyler, the Creator spoke of his dislike towards concert photographers for blocking access to fans.
"It's no secret that Odd Future has a love/hate relationship with photographers at shows," the group's rep told Billboard.com's The Juice on Monday. "[It's] simply because sometimes they are given access the group wishes there fans would have instead."
The rep also said that, "To manipulate the situation [and] to insinuate an attack on a woman specifically is careless and manipulative."
Bolen argues that the publicist was likely not at the event, "because if they had, they would have realized the severity of what Vyron Turner (Leftbrain) did was very wrong."
For their part, organizers of the event have also condemned Odd Future's actions.
"The VOODOO EXPERIENCE does not in any way condone the behavior of Odd Future towards the approved media assembled in the photo pit during the band's set yesterday," the statement said. "Festival organizers would like to apologize to their media guests who experienced and/or witnessed this abusive behavior."
The alleged victim, Harris, told NBC33 in Baton Rouge that she "never expected this to happen" to her.
Despite the incident, Harris declined to files charges at this time. Meanwhile, the group continues to tour on their Golf Wang Tour 2011 through Nov. 8.