The situation surrounding Republic Group president Charlie Walk is getting uglier by the moment. Now, the Universal Music Group executive is claiming that he was extorted.
As the Harvey Weinstein meltdown dominated the headlines in 2017, the music industry kept asking: are we next? Perhaps that question is already being answered.
Now, it looks like the situation surrounding Republic Group president Charlie Walk is hairier than we originally imagined. Just last week, Walk started battling back against numerous allegations sexual abuse and assault. In fact, Walk enlisted Harvey Weinstein attorney Patty Glaser Glaser Weil Fink Howard Avchen & Shapiro LLP to lead the legal counterassault.
It looks like Glaser’s first focus is a possible extortion attempt that prefaced the #MeToo allegations.
Emily Smith the New York Post now reports that Walk’s attorneys have filed a complaint with the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office against broadcast radio executive and station owner Tom Gilligan.
Apparently Gilligan and Walk haven’t spoken in twenty years. But Gilligan allegedly broke the silence with this purported text message:
“The Me Too movement will be knocking on your door… Karma is tough… Charlie you decided to take me and it’s just coming back at you. I want nothing else but to get you f the show embarrassing your family name, ruin your career, take half your roster because they wouldn’t work for someone like you.”
Walk reportedly opted not to respond to a string threatening messages. But Gilligan continued by asking for a favor involving Jon Bon Jovi (again quoting from Smith’s article):
“I’ll make a deal with you. I was told that you stepped in front me with Jon Bon Jovi who is someone I know personally and have known since 1986. You fix that and I’ll back f… we can either come to terms or not…
“I want nothing from you. I will back f if you will do that for me. Or I can continue to harass you and put you on TMZ … use all my powers which I have a lot and blow your life up.”
Those text messages didn’t contain demands for money. But Walk’s attorneys may argue that a response would have triggered a flat-out cash demand (though, that’s difficult to prove).
Exactly what connection Gilligan has to Tristan Coopersmith — who alleged a year-long campaign sexual abuse at the hands Walk — is entirely unclear.
But the nature the texts suggests that Gilligan had some connection back to Coopersmith, and may have ‘pushed’ the former Walk employee to come forward.
+ Charlie Walk’s Accuser Speaks Out — After Being Branded a Liar
Adding further wrinkles to the plot, the texts were actually sent in late December. That’s just weeks before Coopersmith penned her open letter against Walk, a decision that unleashed numerous other abuse allegations. In subsequent comments to Variety, Coopersmith pointed to the Harvey Weinstein imbroglio and the Women’s March as inspiration for penning the letter.
Now, it looks like Walk’s bulldog attorneys are going to rip that ‘inspiration’ story apart — especially if they can connect a dot back to Gilligan.