Note: This article contains descriptions of alleged sexual assault.
Jane Wiedlin, the guitarist in the Los Angeles rock group the Go Go’s, has accused the radio DJ and former club owner Rodney Bingenheimer of sexually assaulting her when she was a teenager. In a new Rolling Stone report that includes testimony from four other women, Wiedlin alleges that, when she was about 15 and he was about 27, Bingenheimer isolated her in a back room of his Los Angeles club, Rodney Bingenheimer’s English Disco, and rubbed his crotch against hers until he ejaculated. “I didn’t know what to do; I was pretty much frozen,” Wiedlin told Rolling Stone. “I didn’t say anything; I didn’t try to stop him.” Bingenheimer did not respond to the magazine’s request for comment.
The other women who spoke with Rolling Stone detailed similar experiences; the article follows a lawsuit, filed late last year and still active, in which the Runaways’ Kari Krome accused Bingenheimer and the late Kim Fowley of sexual assaulting her when she was a teenager. (One of the women to come forward in the new article filed a police report to the Los Angeles Police Department in 2018 that did not result in charges, according to Rolling Stone.) Wiedlin said she is coming forward, in part, to show Krome that she is not alone.
Bingenheimer, an influential rock DJ who hosted a show on KROQ from 1976 to 2017, still hosts a weekly radio show on SiriusXM’s Underground Garage channel. In the Rolling Stone article, Wiedlin added that she has mixed feelings about Bingenheimer’s role as an early champion of the Go-Go’s. “The guy’s a fucking monster, but then he also helped us,” she said, adding, “the Go-Go’s got our first exposure because of Rodney.”
She went on, “I should have said no [the night of the alleged assault], but I didn’t. It wasn’t anything I asked for, but at the same time I wanted to be a sexy young adult or whatever. It’s very tangly in my mind. At this stage, I think, ‘Fuck that guy.’ That was wrong. Even if I had asked him to do something, which I didn’t, it wouldn’t have been right. It was illegal and immoral.”
If you or someone you know has been affected by sexual assault, we encourage you to reach out for support:
RAINN National Sexual Assault Hotline
1 800 656 HOPE (4673)
Crisis Text Line
SMS: Text “HELLO” or “HOLA” to 741-741