Queens of the Stone Age frontman apologizes after kicking female photographer in head
Photo by Kevin Winter | Getty Images
Queens Of The Stone Age frontman Josh Homme sharply and violently kicked a female photographer in the face during the band's set at a radio festival in Los Angeles on Saturday night (December 9th). The photographer, Chelsea Lauren, said the incident was unprovoked and that Homme was even smiling before he struck her. She said the kick was "obviously very intentional." Video of the incident has surfaced online.
Homme released a statement on Sunday (December 10th), calling the incident an accident. He explained, "Last night, while in a state of being lost in performance, I kicked over various lighting and equipment on our stage. Today it was brought to my attention that this included a camera held by photographer Chelsea Lauren. I did not mean for that to happen and I am very sorry. I would never intentionally cause harm to anyone working at or attending one of our shows and I hope Chelsea will accept my sincere apology.”
- In the video, Homme can be seen walking past Lauren, then backtracking a step to kick away her camera.
- Lauren recalled, “I saw (Homme) coming over and I was shooting away. The next thing I know his foot connects with my camera and my camera connects with my face, really hard. He looked straight at me, swung his leg back pretty hard and full-blown kicked me in the face."
- Lauren returned to the pit to shoot Thirty Seconds To Mars and Muse, but went for treatment later that night at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. She planned to file a police report and possibly press charges.
- Minutes after the incident, Lauren said Homme took out what appeared to be a knife and deliberately cut his own forehead, dripping blood for the rest of the performance.
- That same night, Homme referred to the audience as "retards" and insulted Muse, the headliners, saying, "F**k Muse!" He also encouraged the crowd to boo him and told everyone to take their pants off. It is unknown whether Homme was under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
- Lauren, who said she was still suffering from a sore neck, a bruised eyebrow and nausea on Sunday, posted images of Homme that she took just as he kicked at her.
- She wrote, "Assault in any form is not okay, no matter what the reasoning. Alcohol and drugs are no excuse. I was where I was allowed to be, I was not breaking any rules. I was simply trying to do my job. I hold nobody accountable for this but Josh himself . . . As of now, nobody from QOTSA has reached out to me.”
- Queens Of The Stone Age are touring in support of their seventh studio album, Villains.
DID YOU KNOW? Homme was sued by an autograph collector in March, who alleged that the musician was verbally and physically abusive after a 2016 concert in Detroit. The lawsuit alleged that Homme “intentionally and physically grabbed plaintiff around the shoulder area” and “said something to the effect of, 'I am not signing autographs for you blood sucking eBayers, I am tired of you making money off me but I will take photos with you.'"
READ: Check out Variety for more on this story
CHECK IT OUT: Watch video of the incident and see one of Lauren's photos below
Thank you everyone that has reached out with supportive messages. A small update, as I'm being flooded with questions: My neck is a sore, my eyebrow bruised and I'm a bit nauseous. The doctor released me early in the morning. Here are three images. Two of them as Josh looked at me, smiled and then kicked me. The other one is later after he cut his own face with a knife. I was in the pit in tears - and he just stared at me smiling. Assault in any form is not okay, no matter what the reasoning. Alcohol and drugs are no excuse. I was where I was allowed to be, I was not breaking any rules. I was simply trying to do my job. I hold nobody accountable for this but Josh himself. KROQ has nothing to do with this and I will always support them. The irony is someone had thrown an ice cube on to the very slick catwalk before the QOTSA set. I was afraid that one of the band members might slip and hurt themselves so, when the lights went dark, I used my arm to wipe down the runway so nobody would hurt themselves. Thank you to @variety for their immediate concern and care with this matter. As of now, nobody from QOTSA has reached out to me. #queensofthestoneage #QOTSA #JoshHomme