Content warning: This article contains explicit descriptions of sexual assault.

Midnight (November 23) will mark the expiration of New York’s Adult Survivors Act, signed into law by New York Governor Kathy Hochul in May 2022 to create “a one-year window for alleged survivors to take legal action over years-old accusations that would typically be barred under the statute of limitations” (as described by Billboard). On Wednesday, November 22, a lawsuit was filed against Guns N’ Roses frontman Axl Rose in New York Supreme Court.

Rolling Stone obtained the lawsuit filed by Sheila Kennedy, a former Penthouse model and 1983 Pet Of The Year. Kennedy claims that she met Rose at a New York nightclub in 1989 when she was “around age 26” — Rose, born in 1962, would have been around the same age — and “violently sexually assaulted” her in his hotel room later that night.

The lawsuit’s preliminary statement reads, in part, “Rose used his fame, status, and power as a celebrity and performer in the music industry to gain access to manipulate, control, and violently sexually assault Kennedy. As a result of Rose’s sexual abuse and assault, Kennedy has suffered severe emotional, physical, financial, and psychological distress. Kennedy’s injuries resulted from conduct constituting a sexual offense as defined in Article 130 of the New York Penal Law, including without limitation, criminal sexual act in the first degree, sexual misconduct, and/or forcible touching.”

As relayed by Rolling Stone, Rose is alleged to have “grabbed [Kennedy] by the hair and dragged her across the suite back to his bedroom” and thrown Kennedy onto her stomach on his bed.

The lengthy and extremely detailed lawsuit continues (again, as per Rolling Stone), “At that point, Kennedy, with her hands tied behind her back, was locked in the bedroom, bleeding, and vulnerable with Rose alone while he was in a sexual, volatile rage,’ the suit alleged. ‘Kennedy had just witnessed Rose violently have sex with another woman. He dragged Kennedy to his bedroom like a caveman and acted with uncontrolled fury. Rose had physically stopped her from leaving and locked her in. Kennedy was trapped.’ Rose then forcibly penetrated Kennedy’s anus with his penis, the suit alleged.”

Alan S. Gutman, Rose’s attorney, denied Kennedy’s allegations on Rose’s behalf in a statement obtained by People.

“Simply put, this incident never happened,” Gutman said. “Notably, these fictional claims were filed the day before the New York State filing deadline expires. Though he doesn’t deny the possibility of a fan photo taken in passing, Mr. Rose has no recollection of ever meeting or speaking to the Plaintiff, and has never heard about these fictional allegations prior to today. Mr. Rose is confident this case will be resolved in his favor.”

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