In January, several women came forward on social media with allegations of sexual harassment and assault against Heathcliff Berru, the former CEO of Life or Death PR. In the wake of their allegations, Berru stepped down and has since entered a rehab facility in California. (Many of Life or Deaths remaining members left the company to found their own endeavor, Liberal Arts.) When I spoke with him in February for a follow-up story, he was adamant that he has not raped or drugged anyone, but was deeply apologetic for his behavior and determined to work on his recovery. One of the woman who came forward on Twitter, Yasmine Kittles of the band Tearist, has officially filed charges of sexual battery against Berru.
CBS Los Angeles reported on the charges she filed last night, and Kittles has shared that video below via a Facebook post that includes her written statement about why she has decided to proceed:
As some of you may know, yesterday I filed criminal charges against Heathcliff Berru for sexual battery.
After seeing how many women came forward after us I knew I had to do something more than just comment about it.
He has to be stopped and others like him have to know that women will report them. We have to stop the cycle.
It will not be easy, and it’s scary as hell. But we have the power to change things… if we want to. Thank you for your words of support and strength. I am doing this for not just me but for all others to know they are not alone. And if I have to stand here alone to do it…. I fucking will.
***Important Note: It was MY HOME not “his LA Home”***
CBS News : PLEASE note your mistake and make the appropriate changes to this story.
Kittles is filling charges for the initial assault she described in January, which occurred at her home in 2011, and another that occurred at a bar in New York six months later. In the clip, Kittles’ attorney Michael Bressler comments on Berru’s statement: “What Mr. Berru does not say in his statements is that his actions were also illegal. While we believe that anyone struggling with substance abuse should seek immediate professional assistance, it is never–and I quote never–an excuse for sexually abusing women.”