Azealia Banks has launched a GoFundMe campaign to raise funds for her lawsuit against Russell Crowe (via The Daily Beast). Banks accused the actor in 2016 of choking her, spitting on her, and using the N-word while she was attending a party in Crowe’s hotel suite. Banks was at the party as a guest of the rapper RZA. Banks filed a police report, but the L.A. County district attorney’s office did not charge Crowe.
Banks first revealed Crowe’s alleged violent behavior in a social media post published in October 2016. Banks said “the men in the room allowed it to happen.” TMZ looked into Banks’ accusation and reported “multiple witnesses” did not corroborate her story. The witnesses said Banks instigated a fight with Crowe and threatened him. When the L.A. County district attorney’s office didn’t charge Crowe, it cited Crowe’s actions were “justified to prevent the imminent violence threatened by Banks” (via Vulture).
Banks’ GoFundMe campaign statement maintains the allegations against Crowe and accuses him of having a group of people “gaslight” her to make it appear as if the incident was her fault. The musician says Crowe’s harassment and the coverup had “irreparable damage” to her acting career and her “reputation.”
“This isn’t about a big pay day for me,” Banks writes, “it’s about letting the world know that black women are victims to the same sort of disgusting violence men in Hollywood deal out to women and it’s important to send a message that black women also deserve justice and will get justice in these situations.”
Banks claims Crowe would not have laid a finger on her if she was a “white singer.” “So many things like this happen in the entertainment industry and it’s time that ALL these perpetrators get reprimanded so they STOP this violent behavior,” she writes.
IndieWire has reached out to Crowe’s representative for comment.