Nirvana have won the lawsuit filed against them by Spencer Elden, who was the baby featured on the cover of the band’s 1991 album Nevermind, after a judge dismissed the case for the third and final time.
Elden originally filed the lawsuit against Nirvana in August 2021, claiming that the iconic cover image is child pornography and seeking $150,000 in damages. The band’s representatives said that Elden had “spent three decades profiting from his celebrity as the self-anointed ‘Nirvana Baby’.”
The surviving members of Nirvana, Dave Grohl and Krist Novoselic, had dismissed Elden’s case as “not serious”.
On Friday September 3, 2022, U.S. District Judge Fernando Olguin in Los Angeles wrote in an eight-page ruling saying that Spencer Elden waited too long to file the lawsuit claiming that Nirvana sexually exploited him, based on a 10-year statute of limitations.
“In short, because it is undisputed that [Elden] did not file his complaint within ten years after he discovered a violation…the court concludes that his claim is untimely,” Olguin wrote.
Elden had filed three versions of his complaint, and Olguin dismissal prevents him from filing a fourth.
The judge continued, “Because plaintiff had an opportunity to address the deficiencies in his complaint regarding the statute of limitations, the court is persuaded that it would be futile to afford plaintiff a fourth opportunity to file an amended complaint.”
Bert Deixler, a lawyer for Nirvana, told Reuters “We are pleased that this meritless case has been brought to a speedy final conclusion.”