Rapper and wife reject ‘scurrilous accusations’ by women who allege the couple drugged and raped them, following similar allegations earlier this year
Rapper TI and his wife Tiny have denied allegations of sexual abuse from three women, adding to denials earlier this year after four other women made similar allegations.
On Friday, New York lawyer Tyrone A Blackburn announced he was “speaking with investigators from multiple jurisdictions to pursue criminal charges” after the new allegations.
One woman alleges that in 2010, the couple forced her to take drugs, and then took her to a hotel for sex where “she could not consent”. Another woman alleges TI, real name Clifford Harris, and a male friend, drugged and raped her in a hotel room, also in 2010. The third woman alleges she was drugged and “sex trafficked in Nevada, California and Florida”.
In a statement to Billboard, the couple’s lawyer Steve Sadow said: “The Harrises are still waiting for the accusers to reveal themselves publicly. By continuing to hide behind anonymous allegations, the unnamed accusers effectively render themselves not credible and unworthy of belief. We say: let the light shine on their identities so we can go about disproving these scurrilous accusations.”
TI was once one of the most popular rappers in the US, scoring eight Top 10 albums, three of them reaching No 1 between 2006 and 2008. He also has a successful acting career, appearing in Marvel’s Ant-Man franchise and more, and has starred in numerous reality TV series.
Tiny, aka Tameka Harris, was a member of R&B group Xscape, known also for co-writing the TLC hit No Scrubs. She and TI married in 2010 and filed for divorce in 2016, but reconciled the following year.
In March, four women accused the Harrises of drugging and sexually assaulting them. Two of them gave accounts of the alleged abuse, in each case in 2005, to the New York Times. One alleges she was invited to the couple’s VIP area in a nightclub where her drink was spiked, leaving her incapacitated when the couple later sexually assaulted her in a hotel room.
Another woman alleges the couple “forced her to engage in sexual acts with different women against her will” after forcing her to take ecstasy. She alleged that other women told her “of being kidnapped and held against their will for days at a time”. Both women said they had been threatened with violence if they spoke out about the alleged attacks. Blackburn said he was representing 11 people in all, who said they were victimised by the couple or members of their entourage.
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Sadow said the couple “deny in the strongest possible terms these baseless and unjustified allegations”, calling them “nothing more than the continuation of a sordid shakedown campaign that began on social media and now attempts to manipulate the press and misuse the justice system”.
In January, the stylist Sabrina Peterson claimed TI had once pulled a gun on her, and subsequently posted a series of anonymous allegations on Instagram from women who claimed the Harrises had drugged and sexually assaulted them. The Harrises said they “emphatically deny in the strongest way possible the egregiously appalling allegations being made against them by Sabrina Peterson”.
In the wake of the initial allegations, representatives from the #MeToo movement, Time’s Up and the National Women’s Law Center voiced support for the accusers, writing: “To the Black survivors who continue to come forward in the face of what feels like insurmountable barriers and backlash: thank you, we see you, and we hold space for you. We reaffirm our commitment to ending sexual violence.”
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