Opera Star David Daniels and Conductor Husband Arrested on Sexual Assault Charges

David Daniels and his husband Scott Walters were arrested on a sexual assault charge, PEOPLE confirms

David Daniels Scott WaltersCredit: Washtenaw County Jail
Photo: Washtenaw County Jail (2)

David Daniels, the internationally famous countertenor who has been called one of the world’s greatest opera stars, was arrested on a sexual assault charge, PEOPLE confirms.

On Tuesday, Daniels, 52, and husband Scott Walters, who is a conductor, were both arrested in Ann Arbor, Michigan, where they live, on warrants issued by the Houston Police Department, according to a spokesperson from HPD.

The Ann Arbor Police Department tells PEOPLE the couple, who were married in 2014 by opera fan and officiant Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, is awaiting a hearing on bail and currently being held in Michigan’s Washtenaw County Jail.

Daniels and Walters face extradition to Texas, where they are accused of raping baritone singer Samuel Schultz in 2010. In August 2018, Schultz accused the pair of drugging and raping him when he was a 23-year-old graduate student at Rice University.

In a statement to PEOPLE, Schultz said, “Survivors’ voices, our stories, our choices, and our hope create a shared strength that is more powerful than the victim-blaming tactics of those for whom the truth is inconvenient and who wish for our silence. Recovery from sexual assault is a process for which there is no deadline. For me, it’s imperative to have an articulate hope and to show empathy.”

David Daniels.

“David and Scott are innocent of any wrongdoing. Sam Schultz is not a victim. He never would have gotten this much attention from his singing, and he knows and resents that fact,” Daniels’ and Walters’ lawyer Matt Hennessy said in a statement obtained by MLive, the New York Times and NPR. “He waited eight years to complain about adult, consensual sex to ride the MeToo movement to unearned celebrity. We will fight this.”

Hennessy did not immediately respond to PEOPLE’s request for comment.

Daniels is also a tenured professor at the University of Michigan, where he has been teaching since 2015. University spokeswoman Kim Broekhuizen confirms to PEOPLE Daniels has been on paid leave and off campus since August 2018.

“We will continue to closely monitor the situation as we determine the appropriate next steps,” Broekhuizen said in a statement.

The UM Board of Regents voted to give Daniels approval for tenure in May 2018, less than two months following an anonymous complaint against him.

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In March 2018, Daniels was accused of sexual misconduct by a student who claimed the professor offered to pay him for sex over Grindr, according to MLive. Pittsfield police investigated the matter but found no evidence of criminal wrongdoing.

Daniels is also named in an October 2018 federal civil lawsuit filed by former University of Michigan student Andrew Lipian, who claims he was sexually assaulted after being given bourbon and tricked into taking sleep medication, according to NYT.

Daniels filed a counterclaim in December, calling the accusations “fake and malicious.”

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