Jermaine Jackson has been accused of sexually assaulting a woman more than 30 years ago in a new lawsuit.
PEOPLE reports that Jackson, who is known as the second vocalist in The Jackson 5 behind his famous brother, Michael Jackson, was named as the abuser of Rita Butler Barrett in a suit that was filed in Los Angeles County Superior Court on Wednesday, Dec. 27. Butler Barrett accuses Jackson of sexual abuse, sexual assault, sexual battery, negligence, and rape. Jermaine L. Jackson Music Productions, Inc. and Work Records, Inc. were also listed as co-defendants with Jackson.
In the legal documents, Barrett states she knew Jackson for several years before he allegedly assaulted her. Her husband, Ben Barrett, notably worked closely with Berry Gordy, who she believes was “in a business and/or management relationship” with Jackson at the time as well.
At the time of the alleged incident, Jermaine Jackson arrived at Barrett’s home unannounced. He then supposedly forced himself inside the home. Barrett says he then sexually assaulted her with “force and violence” and then left when he was “satiated.”
“During the assault, Plaintiff, a woman of faith prayed to God for help,” the legal documents revealed. “During the assault, Plaintiff feared for her life.”
Barrett also said she reported the incident to Gordy the following day. However, she accused Gordy of withholding and concealing the acts. She stated that by doing this, Gordy as well as Jackson and “others in the business relationship” were able to gain profits from Jackson’s work “for years to come.”
Jermaine Jackson’s Alleged Assault Victim Says a Cover-Up Was in Place to ‘Prevent Disclosure of Information’ Related to the Abuse
Also in the legal documents, Barrett alleged there was a cover-up in place to “prevent disclosure of information relating to the abuse” for profit and preservation of Jermaine Jackson’s reputation.
Barrett claims she has suffered severe emotional, physical, and psychological injury, including humiliation, shame, guilt, economic loss, economic capacity, and permanent emotional distress following the incident with Jackson.
Barrett’s attorney, Jeff Anderson, also released a statement. He said his client “suffered an egregious and violent sexual assault” at the hands of Jermaine Jackson.
“This is about her power and the declaration of it when she learned something could be done under the law,” the statement reads. “And she found the strength and support to find us and is now standing up for herself and others.”
Jermaine Jackson has not spoken out about the situation.