[Warning: Potentially Triggering Content]
Kesha and Dr. Luke have reached a settlement in their decade-long legal battle, just weeks before the case was set to head to trial.
As Perezcious readers know, Kesha sued the record producer, born Lukasz Gottwald, in 2014 for sexual, emotional, and physical abuse, alleging he drugged and sexually assaulted her in 2005. Her filing was submitted in Los Angeles. Luke promptly denied the claims and then filed a countersuit in New York City for breach of contract and defamation. In 2016, Kesha’s request to be released from her recording contract with Luke’s label was denied and she later dropped her Cali case, leaving just the NYC defamation lawsuit.
In 2020, Kesha was ordered to pay $374,000 after a judge ruled she had defamed Luke via a 2016 text to Lady Gaga, in which she alleged he had raped Katy Perry (even though the official found “no evidence whatsoever” to back the claim up). She filed an appeal, content on fighting it out in court, and the case was set to go to trial next month.
Just last week, the New York Court of Appeals reportedly ruled the Grammy-nominated producer meets the qualifications of a public figure, meaning he would have to “prove the allegedly defamatory statements were made with ‘actual malice,'” the court declared via Variety. He’ll no longer have to do this as the very complicated and contentious battle, which has lasted for nearly 10 years, is finally over.
On Thursday, both parties shared a joint statement on social media announcing they have reached a settlement. As per the deal, they were each required to post a statement with both their reactions. Kesha remarked on Instagram:
“Only God knows what happened that night. As I have always said, I cannot recount everything that happened. I am looking forward to closing the door on this chapter of my life and beginning a new one. I wish nothing but peace to all parties involved.”
We can’t imagine how difficult of a chapter this must’ve been for her. As frustrating as it might be to end things without a clear resolution or sense of justice following the lengthy court battle, it sounds like she’s ready to move on.
Meanwhile, the music exec continued to deny the allegations against him, stating:
“While I appreciate Kesha again acknowledging that she cannot recount what happened that night in 2005, I am absolutely certain that nothing happened. I never drugged or assaulted her and would never do that to anyone. For the sake of my family, I have vigorously fought to clear my name for nearly 10 years. It is time for me to put this difficult matter behind me and move on with my life. I wish Kesha well.”
Other details of the settlement haven’t been made public at this time. You can see the post (below):
This resolution comes one month after Kesha released her latest album, Gag Order, which is contractually her last full-length record with Luke’s Kemosabe Records label. It’s largely based on the struggles she’s faced these last few years. Hopefully, with this settlement, she can begin to put this turmoil behind her and start a fresh new chapter. Thoughts? Let us know (below).
If you or someone you know has experienced sexual violence and would like to learn more about resources, consider checking out https://www.rainn.org/resources.