Charlie Walk, the head of Republic Records, a division of Universal Music Group, has been placed on leave following sexual misconduct and sexual harassment allegations from three women who previously worked with him at different points in his career. Walk has also resigned from Fox’s new musical competition reality TV show The Four. The show’s first season aired this month, and Walk was one of four celebrity judges, along with P Diddy (Sean Combs,) Meghan Trainor, and DJ Khaled.
Walk gave a statement following the announcement (via Rolling Stone):
“Out of respect for the contestants, my fellow judges and everyone involved with the show, I have made the decision not to attend the finale of The Four. I do not want my presence to be a distraction. Needless to say this is very upsetting. Although I continue to support the ‘Me Too’ movement, there has been an extreme rush to judgment against me in this particular case which is unfair and inconsistent with anything that even actually happened. I welcome any investigation so that in short order these unfounded and hurtful accusations can be put to rest.”
Republic Records/UMG said the label has “retained an outside law firm” to look into the allegations against Walk. At least one of the accusations comes from a former Republic employee, who published her account anonymously on the music industry newsletter The Lefsetz Letter. She alleges that when she was laid off from Republic, Walk took the opportunity to comment suggestively on her appearance in front of her to another coworker.
“One time after I was laid off from Republic he twirled me in front of Joe Carozza, Republic’s head of PR, and said something like, ‘She’s so hot, look at her, I can say it now that she doesn’t work for us,’” she wrote.
We’ve reached out to Republic for comment on the investigation, and will update this post if we hear back.
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