Judge dismisses one of the sexual assault lawsuits filed against Marilyn Manson

Marilyn Manson attends the 2020 Vanity Fair Oscar Party
(Image credit: Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/Getty Images)

A judge in Los Angeles has dismissed one of the sexual assault lawsuits filed against Marilyn Manson after the plaintiff, Ashley Morgan Smithline, failed to appoint new legal representation following her original lawyer's decision to withdraw from the case.

Smithline’s had sued Warner for alleged sexual assault, sexual battery, intentional infliction of emotional distress, unlawful imprisonment and more. In a TV interview in May 2021, the model and actress called Manson a “monster” and said  “I was afraid for my life every single moment I was with him."

The singer denied all the allegations levelled against him.

Though the dismissal of Ashley Morgan Smithline's case was a ruling by default, Warner’s lawyer Howard King is claiming it as a victory for the singer.

In a statement made after the judgement, King says: “We thank and commend Ashley Smithline for dismissing her claims against Brian Warner without seeking or receiving anything in return. Ms. Smithline has refused to be manipulated by others who are trying to pursue their own agendas against Mr. Warner. We wish her well and will continue to work to assure that a significant price will be paid by those who have tried to abuse our legal system.”

Smithline can choose to refile the case if she finds new legal representation or chooses to represent herself.

Manson till faces two further lawsuits. Of the two remaining lawsuits, one was filed by former Game Of Thrones actress Esmé Bianco, an ex-girlfriend, the other filed by a second ex-girlfriend, known as Jane Doe in legal documents.

Bianco alleges that Manson physically, sexually, psychologically, and emotionally abused the English actress on multiple occasions, and raped her “in or around May 2011.”

Jane Doe claims the singer raped her at his home in Los Angeles in 2011, after a relationship which left her deprived of food and sleep and fearful for her physical safety.

In December, George Gascón, the district attorney for L.A. County, issued an update on the current status of the investigations, saying “The Brian Warner matter is still under investigation by the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department and has not yet been submitted to our office.

“Please be assured that we are requesting regular updates on the status of the investigation. The District Attorney is committed to investing in trauma-informed care for all victims of sexual assault, abuse, and intimate partner violence. We understand how difficult it may be to come forward as a victim, especially when the case involves this level of notoriety, and are dedicated to treating all victims with the highest levels of care and respect.”

A fourth lawsuit, filed by Manson's former assistant Ashley Walters, was dismissed by a judge last year for being beyond the statute of limitations. Walters is appealing the order.

Manson is suing another ex-girlfriend accuser, Evan Rachel Wood, for defamation following allegations she made against him in HBO documentary  Phoenix Rising.

Manson claims that Wood, and her on-off romantic partner Ashley Gore, hacked into his computers and social media accounts, manufactured evidence that he was emailing illicit pornography, impersonated an FBI agent, provided checklists of alleged crimes to prospective accusers, and knowingly made false statements and defamatory claims.

Founded in 1983, Metal Hammer is the global home of all things heavy. We have breaking news, exclusive interviews with the biggest bands and names in metal, rock, hardcore, grunge and beyond, expert reviews of the lastest releases and unrivalled insider access to metal's most exciting new scenes and movements. No matter what you're into – be it heavy metal, punk, hardcore, grunge, alternative, goth, industrial, djent or the stuff so bizarre it defies classification – you'll find it all here, backed by the best writers in our game.