Accuser Admits She Lied About Conor Oberst Rape Claims

A Bright Eyes fan named Joanie Faircloth issued a notarized statement Monday admitting that accusations about Conor Oberst raping her 10 years ago were lies she made up “to get attention.”    

The accusations were initially posted in the comment section of a Dec. 16 story on the online magazine Faircloth (who is also known as Joan Elizabeth Harris) claimed she was 16 at the time of the incident, which she said took place after a Bright Eyes show in 2003. She reportedly created a Tumblr blog to reveal more information. Although the blog and comments were deleted, the media picked up on the accusations thanks in part to the allegations reportedly being reblogged by other Tumblr users.

Photo: Chris McKay /
Shaky Knees Music Festival, Atlantic Station Park, Atlanta, Ga.

Oberst’s publicist released a statement in January saying that although the musician normally wouldn’t comment on blog chatter, “this is a particularly serious and sickening allegation and there is no truth to it.” The next month Oberst filed a libel suit against Faircloth, saying the claims had damaged his career.

Here is Faircloth’s full statement, which was notarized in Durham County, N.C., and first posted on

“The statements I made and repeated online and elsewhere over the past six months accusing Conor Oberst of raping me are 100% false. I made up those lies about him to get attention while I was going through a difficult period in my life and trying to cope with my son’s illness. I publicly retract my statements about Conor Oberst, and sincerely apologize to him, his family, and his fans for writing such awful things about him. I realize that my actions were wrong and could undermine the claims of actual sexual assault victims and for that I also apologize. I’m truly sorry for all the pain that I caused.”

As of the time of this post, Oberst hasn’t responded to the statement on his website, Facebook page or Twitter page.