“I never abused nobody. You know, it just sounds crazy to people to say that, hear ‘you abused me,'” Bambaataa said. “You know my thing is you know all my people back then, you know the hundreds of people that been around me. If something like that happened, why you never went to none of them?”
The accusations against Bambaataa — best known for his 1982 classic “Planet Rock” with Soulsonic Force, and as the founder of the Universal Zulu Nation — surfaced after 50-year-old writer/politician and former Bambaataa associate Ronald Savage spoke with former Hot 97 DJ Star on Shot 97 in March. The former New York State Democratic Committee Member released the self-published 2014 memoir Impulse, Urges and Fantasies, describing the times Bambaataa allegedly molested him during the 1980s.
Bambaataa continues to maintain his innocence. “It’s hard to say. You don’t know what many of these people are thinking. What is behind it. Some parts are saying it could be shakeups. Certain things people might have wanted,” he said. When specifically asked about his encounters with Savage, Bambaataa offered, “I ain’t touched this brother whatsoever.”
Savage believes that other victims have yet to come forward and is seeking to amend the statute of limitations, which states that child sex abuse victims cannot seek criminal or civil penalties after the age of 23. The statute of limitations also prevents a formal police investigation into the Bambaataa case.
Per Bambaataa’s lawyer, Charles Tucker Jr., no settlements or payouts have been offered. “Absolutely not,” he told Fox News. “Not today. Not the day before yesterday. Not ever.” Tucker recently told Billboard that there have been no civil or criminal complaints against Bambaataa. He said, “For lack of a better term, we are now living in an age of the court of public opinion.”
Since the allegations, three other men have stepped forward with similar claims of sexual abuse, while the Universal Zulu Nation has distanced itself from Bambaataa, recently announcing new leadership and a “significant restructure” within the organization.