Garrett Borns, best known as indie-rock artist BØRNS, is denying allegations of sexual misconduct made by multiple young women on Twitter.
In tweets beginning earlier this week, the women describe meeting Borns at concerts or over social media, staying in touch via Instagram direct messaging and Snapchat, and alleged unwelcome sexual encounters.
“I am both hurt and angered over the disturbing and false allegations that have been spread over the past few days on social media,” Borns wrote in a statement posted to Instagram. “All of the relationships I had were legal and consensual. They ended abruptly and that obviously caused hurt feelings, but for anyone to suggest anything beyond that is irresponsible.”
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On Sept. 21, a woman named Nia posted a tweet in which she called Borns a “manipulator.” She said that she met the singer-songwriter at a concert in 2015, and stayed in contact with him via text and social media. Months later, she says that he asked her to “meet him for drinks” in L.A. “I was expecting a bar but ended up at his place… I became drunk and was completely taken advantage of,” she said. “Once everything happened I went to the bathroom and started bleeding. I was completely shocked from the blood and started to get it together and realized what just happened. I blamed myself for that night because I didn’t say no even though I was intoxicated.”
Nia proceeds to recount another incident that she said took place in a Chicago hotel the following month. “I actually let him talk me into using me … again,” she writes. “In public, in front of his friend, and the hotel bellhop, Garrett put his hands on an inappropriate place on my body and kept touching me up and down.” The pair then allegedly went upstairs to his room. “He did not use protection and didn’t care when I said I wasn’t comfortable with that and was not on birth control at the time,” she writes.
Two days later, another woman on Twitter named Lyss recounted her experience with Borns, whom she refers to as “someone I adored and feared and felt so much for for almost 4 years.” The story begins when she met him at a music festival when she was 16. “I adored him and his music,” she explains. “I idolized him.”
Lyss reports that she received a message on Instagram from Borns. She claims that he invited her to his hotel room where he “began to touch my leg, but I didn’t think anything of it.” She continues, “He began going further up my leg, and started skimming me in other places. I want to add that he also was aware of how old I was, 16, yet he still touched me the way he did.” Lyss shares that she continued to correspond with him over text and social media. “He told me what he wanted to do to me, and wanted me to call him ‘daddy.’ And referred to himself as such. He asked me questions that made me uncomfortable that fed into his fetishes. He would ask me to send specific pictures and videos of myself, and I did,” she writes. “I was so terrified of losing him because he became a normalcy in my life.”
Lyss continues: “When I was 18, the day came where we were intimate at his place in Los Angeles. He had groomed me from age 16 for this.” She alleges, “He got me drunk, started touching me, and we went into his bedroom. The things he did were things I did not want, and it hurt. He was aggressive and controlling and I was so fucking scared of him.” Lyss later added, “I just wanted to clarify that I did not accuse him of r*pe, the sex was consensual, and happened when I was of age.”
Another claim was made around this time by a 19-year-old woman named Mathilda. She alleges that she and Borns began corresponding over social media, but that he “only [asked] for nudes. If I didn’t send any, he ghosted me for days.” She claims that he flew her out to Hamburg for two days, but that his sexual advances took things too far. “I did not like the way he wanted to have sex wit me. Made me scream for daddy’s cock etc etc. Very uncomfortable,” she wrote. “I got very attached and he knew that. I was just a little puppet in his game.”
Mathilda also details a proposition in which Borns offered to follow her Instagram account, in exchange for what she calls “a very gross video.” Mathilda explains, “If he did follow me, it would be a proof to me that I actually meant something to him.” She recounts that he followed her, she sent the video, and he immediately unfollowed and sent her a direct message laughing.
Another report of sexual misconduct came from an anonymous source, whose messages were posted by the Twitter account @Exposing_BØRNS. She explains that the singer knew of her mental health issues and “took advantage of my being fragile.”
“He goes after young, impressionable, unstable fans who he knows will do anything he wants them to,” she writes. “Including sending very explicit pictures and videos they’re uncomfortable sending bc they love him and don’t want to lose his attention.”