Rapper Nelly Denies That He Sexually Assaulted a Woman While on Tour After Early Morning Arrest
On Saturday morning, the rapper was arrested following a woman’s claim that Nelly had allegedly assaulted her on his tour bus
Early Saturday morning, rapper Nelly was arrested following a woman’s claim that the rapper had allegedly sexually assaulted her on his tour bus while in Washington.
Auburn Police Department confirmed in a statement to The Blast that the rapper had been arrested. He was later released from police custody as authorities continue to investigate the claim.
“At 3:48 AM a female called 911 to report that she was sexually assaulted by a male, who is known as the rapper ‘Nelly,’ ” a spokesperson for the police department said. “The alleged assault was reported to occur on the tour bus that was parked at the listed location. Nelly had performed at the White River Amphitheater just hours before.
“After Patrol Officers investigated the incident, at 4:37 AM Nelly was taken into custody and booked at the SCORE jail facility,” the police spokesperson said. “Auburn Police are continuing to investigate this incident. The above details are all we have to release at this time.”
- Want to keep up with the latest crime coverage? Click here to get breaking crime news, ongoing trial coverage and details of intriguing unsolved cases in the True Crime Newsletter.
A rep for Nelly tells PEOPLE via a statement from his lawyer that the woman’s claims are “a completely fabricated allegation” and they are confident that he will not ultimately be charged.
“Nelly is the victim of a completely fabricated allegation,” attorney Scott Rosenblum said in a statement. “Our initial investigation clearly establishes this allegation is devoid of credibility and is motivated by greed and vindictiveness. I am confident, once this scurrilous accusation is thoroughly investigated, there will be no charges. Nelly is prepared to address and pursue all legal avenues to redress any damage caused by this clearly false allegation.”
On Saturday afternoon, Nelly tweeted that he was “shocked” by the allegations and that he is “completely innocent.”
“Let me say that I am beyond shocked that I have been targeted with this false allegation,” he said. “I am completely innocent. I am confident that once the facts are looked at, it will be very clear that I am the victim of a false allegation.
“I do want to apologize to my loved ones for the embarrassment and for putting myself in a situation where I could be victimized by this false and defaming allegation,” he added. “I also want to thank my fans for their unwavering support. They know me. I assure you I will be vindicated. And I assure you, I will pursue every legal option to address this defaming claim. Thank you. In other words y’all know damm well I ain’t do no dumm S^*t like this..!! Love ..!!!!”
Nelly continued, “To be absolutely clear. I have not been charged with a crime therefore no bail was required. I was released, pending further investigation.”
• PEOPLE’s special edition
True Crime Stories: 35 Real Cases That Inspired the Show
Law & Order
Nelly is currently on tour with the country duo Florida Georgia Line . They are scheduled to play a show Saturday in Ridgefield, Washington. A rep for FGL did not respond to request for comment.
A police spokesperson said Nelly’s tour bus was parked near a Walmart at the time of the rapper’s arrest and that officers felt like they had probable cause for arrest, booking him into the SCORE jail in Des Moines, according to Q13 Fox.
Nelly had previously been arrested on several drug charges — including felony possession —while traveling in Tennessee in April 2015.
After a trooper claimed he smelled marijuana, police say they found a “small amount” of marijuana, drug paraphernalia and a plastic bag containing a substance they believed to be methamphetamine in his vehicle, according to a press release.
The rapper pled guilty to misdemeanor possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia and was sentenced to a year of probation. After further testing, the substance in the bag was determined not to be methamphetamine and the felony charge against Nelly was dropped, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.
In June, Nelly stopped by PEOPLE Now to promote his tour and spoke about how even though he was committed to his girlfriend Shantel Jackson, he wasn’t quite ready to tie the knot.
“The thing about marriage to me is…I take it very, very seriously. It’s something I’m only doing one time,” he said. “For me, it’s almost like society would prefer you to have been married and got divorced and tried it then to be married and stay married. For me, it’s more important to die married than to have been married and it didn’t work out. I want to leave this place knowing I was in love and somebody loved me and we were together, then to be like, ‘Well I’m never getting married again and I’m ruined.’ ”
Nelly continued, “If it happens, when it happens. That’s it! She’s locked in man, she’s trapped. Death do you part is serious around here!”