Charlie Walk denies sexual harassment accusations as UMG opens ‘full and complete review’

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Republic Records President Charlie Walk has denied accusations of sexual harassment levelled at him by a former colleague, Tristan Coopersmith.

On Monday, Coopersmith published an open letter accusing Walk of inappropriate behaviour after she started working for him over a decade ago.

Coopersmith appears to be a one year period from 2004 when she, aged 27, was Director of Millennial Research & Marketing at Sony label Columbia Records. Walk was EVP of Creative Marketing and Promotion at the time. 

“For a year I shuddered at the idea of being called into your office, where you would stealthily close the door and make lewd comments about my body and share your fantasies of having sex with me.”

tristan coopersmith

“For a year I shuddered at the idea of being called into your office, where you would stealthily close the door and make lewd comments about my body and share your fantasies of having sex with me,” wrote Coopersmith.

“No previous experience had taught me what to do in such a situation. So I laughed it off, gently reminded you that you were married with children, and tried to change the subject. But you were relentless.

“You would instant message me throughout the day making sexual remarks. Truly vulgar words and ideas. Pervasively. You invited me to dinners that in hindsight I had no business being at, but you did it so that you could put your hand on my thigh under the table.”

In response, Walk has confirmed that he worked with Coopersmith 15 years ago, but called the allegations “untrue”.

“It is very upsetting to learn of this untrue allegation made by someone who worked with me 15 years ago, without incident. There has never been a single HR claim against me at any time during my 25+ year career.”

Charlie walk, republic records

He said: “It is very upsetting to learn of this untrue allegation made by someone who worked with me 15 years ago, without incident.

“There has never been a single HR claim against me at any time during my 25+ year career, spanning three major companies.

“I have consistently been a supporter of the women’s movement and this is the first time I have ever heard of this or any other allegation — and it is false.” 

“we take the allegations very seriously and intend to conduct a full and complete review of this matter.”

universal music spokesperson

A Universal Music spokesperson said in a statement that “while it appears this blog post relates to the period prior to Mr. Walk’s appointment to his position at Republic Records, we take the allegations very seriously and intend to conduct a full and complete review of this matter.”

Walk is a judge on Fox TV show The Four: Battle for Stardom.

A statement released from the media company said it is “currently reviewing this matter and are committed to fostering a safe environment on all of our shows.”

Coopersmith also claims that Walk cornered her and pushed her into his bedroom and onto his bed during an event at his home.

After telling a senior executive of her allegations, Coopersmith says she left the company by mutual agreement – but was “paid to keep my mouth shut and my reputation intact.”

She continues: “To you, Charlie Walk what you did was normal. It was a power you perceived to have earned, with a right to exercise it.

“But to me it was insulting, confusing and objectifying. And it was a secret that I held for a very long time, my experiences only spilling out in flashbacks and nightmares.

“my silence paid off. I was able to flourish in the industry, but the more that I did, the more that I saw there were so many Charlie Walks.”

tristan coopersmith

“And my silence paid off. I was able to flourish in the industry, but the more that I did, the more that I saw there were so many Charlie Walks.

“I walked away from the world of entertainment 8 years ago and never looked back.”

Music Business Worldwide

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