Aerosmith frontman Steven Tyler sued for historical sex crimes

Julia Misley, who previously claimed Steven Tyler had a sexual relationship with her when she was a teenager, is now suing the Aerosmith frontman for sexual assault, sexual battery and intentional infliction of emotional distress.

The lawsuit was filed Tuesday under a 2019 California law that gave adult victims of childhood sexual assault a three-year window to file lawsuits for historical assault. Today is the deadline to file such claims.

While the lawsuit doesn’t name Tyler, Misley identified him by name in the statement, issued through her lawyers. She has recounted her experiences with Tyler in prior interviews, and Tyler discussed a relationship with a teenage girl in two books, published in 2011 and 1997.

Steven Tyler Julia Holcomb's relationship explained.
Holcomb and Tyler in the early 1970s, around the time Tyler became Holcomb’s legal guardian.

The acknowledgements section of his memoir Does The Noise In My Head Bother You? thanks a “Julia Halcomb,” which Misley said is a reference to her.

Misley met Tyler in 1973 at a show in Portland, Oregon, and was invited to Tyler’s hotel room, where she said she told him she was 16 years old. Tyler would have been 25 or 26 at the time. Misley asserts that Tyler then committed “various acts of criminal sexual conduct.”

Misley said that Tyler used his role, status, and power as a well-known musician and rock star to gain access to, groom, manipulate, exploit, and sexually assault her over three years. As a result, she has suffered an emotional injury and economic losses. She engaged in sexual acts with Tyler following other shows, and in 1974 he became her legal guardian so that she could travel to him with shows, the lawsuit alleges.

The lawsuit goes on to say that Misley became pregnant in 1975 and that the Aerosmith frontman coerced her into having an abortion.

Misley claims that by publishing memoirs that detailed parts of their relationship without her knowledge or consent, Tyler subjected Misley to public attention and scrutiny, which re-traumatised her and made it harder for her to recover.

In Tyler’s 2011 memoir, he mentions meeting an unnamed 16-year-old “girlfriend to be.” He wrote that he almost “took a teen bride” and got her parents to sign over custody so he wouldn’t get arrested when she went on tour with him out of state.

Aerosmith books Walk This Way Steven Tyler Does The Noise In My Head Fall and Rise – Every record tells a story

The lawsuit states that…

“By including Plaintiff’s name in the acknowledgements, he left the readers and the public without any doubt of Plaintiff’s identity,” adding that Misley was confronted by a picture of her face on a tabloid cover at a grocery store after the book’s publication.


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Jon Whitman

Jon Whitman is a seasoned journalist and author who has been living and working in Asia for more than two decades. Born and raised in Glasgow, Scotland, Jon has been at the forefront of some of the most important stories coming out of China in the past decade. After a long and successful career in East sia, Jon is now semi-retired and living in the Outer Hebrides. He continues to write and is an avid traveller and photographer, documenting his experiences across the world.