Following an intense few months since their arrest on September 9th 2017, Polish death metal outfit Decapitated have now been acquitted of all rape and kidnapping charges that were made against all four members of the band less than two weeks before they were scheduled to go on trial (January 16th 2018).
According to a report made on The Spokesman-Review, a local publication based in Spokane, Washington, prosecutor Kelly Fitzgerald filed a motion, citing “the well being of the victim” as a reason for dropping the charges without prejudice, meaning that all four members of Decapitated could be prosecuted in the future.
The band were arrested on September 9th 2017 in Santa Ana, California whilst they were on a co-headline tour in North America alongside Thy Art Is Murder, following a report of alleged kidnapping and rape of a woman after their show in Spokane, Washington on August 31st 2017. They were temporarily held in jail in Santa Ana before then being extradited back to Spokane.
Due to the arrest, and subsequent investigation in a lead up to the now abandoned trial, all of the band’s future planned touring commitments were cancelled, including a headline tour in the UK in November to support their latest record, ‘Anticult’.
With all charges against them now dropped, Decapitated have since posted a short statement via their social channels which can be read below.
“All charges against Decapitated have formally been dropped. Arrested September 8 in Santa Ana whilst on tour, the members of the band were jailed until December where they were released on their own recognizance.
New evidence arose that helped show that the band was innocent. While a trial would have given the band the opportunity to have all this evidence heard, the band welcome the decision and are excited to return back to their homes in Poland.
The members of Decapitated – Wacław, Rafal, Michał and Hubert – send a sincere and heartfelt thanks to all who supported them during this difficult time, including fans, friends, and family.”
The band’s attorneys said that news of the dismissal was surreal, but expected. Steve Graham, representing guitarist Wacław Kiełtyka, said that while he can only speak for his client, “everyone is relieved and they’re looking to get back home.”