In a new piece on The Huffington Post’s longform section, The Runaways’ original bassist, Jackie Fuchs (who performed as Jackie Fox), comes forward with a chilling, highly detailed story about the night she was raped by the notorious svengali who assembled the all-girl teenaged rock band in the mid-1970s. The story has haunted Fuchs, who went on to become a successful entertainment lawyer, and those who witnessed it to this day.
Kim Fowley, who died this past January after battling cancer, fed Fuchs a steady stream of Quaaludes during the hotel after-party following The Runaways’ New Year’s Eve 1975 show, until the 16-year-old was practically unconscious. After offering her up to a roadie (and others), Fowley then allegedly raped Jackie in front of band members and friends assembled for the party. Several others present that night — like Runaways singer Cherie Currie and one of Fowley’s other young female proteges (and sexual assault victims), Kari Krome — corroborate Fuchs’ story. No one stopped him, though Currie claims to have yelled at him and stormed out of the room.
“I remember opening my eyes, Kim Fowley was raping me, and there were people watching me,” Jackie says. She looked out from the bed and noticed Currie and [Joan] Jett staring at her. She says this was her last memory of the night. Jett, through a representative, denied witnessing the event as it has been described here. Her representative referred all further questions to Jackie “as it’s a matter involving her and she can speak for herself.”
Krome says Currie and the band’s Joan Jett were “snickering” nearby throughout the whole event, while Fuchs’ Runaways replacement following a 1977 breakdown and subsequent departure, Victory Tischler-Blue, remembered the way Jackie’s rape became a “running joke” within a band that had stayed silent in light of the horrifying events. “I heard about that nonstop,” Tischler-Blue recently told HuffPo. “They would talk about Kim fucking Jackie like a dog.”
During his life, Fowley denied sexually abusing the young members of The Runaways. He said of the claims in Queens of Noise , the 2013 biography of the band, “They can talk about it until the cows come home but, in my mind, I didn’t make love to anybody in the Runaways nor did they make love to me.”
Do read the entire piece — it paints a disturbing portrait of rock ‘n’ roll misogyny in the 1970s through the eyes of one survivor who was, unsurprisingly, shook to her core.