San Jose Mercury News

Courtney Love Sued Over Stage Assault
October 18, 1995

A 25-year-old man is suing rock singer Courtney Love, accusing her of assaulting and humiliating him during a concert last year at a Palo Alto night club.

Jonathan James Hogan, who has moved from Santa Clara to Montana, says that Love drew him on stage, then kicked and pummeled him.

Also named in the suit was The Edge nightclub, where the assault allegedly occurred.

Love’s attorney, Seth Lichtenstein of Los Angeles, could not be reached for comment.

Hogan says the incident took place Nov. 12 during a Hole concert, the band she leads. Love leaped into the audience and “crowd-surfed” over her fans’ upraised hands, according to Hogan’s lawyer.

Kelly G. Watson, a Nevada attorney who filed the lawsuit, said that when Love got back to the stage, she shouted, “Who touched me?”

Hogan jokingly replied that he didn’t know, but wished it had been him, Watson said.

Love motioned Hogan to come on stage.

“My client’s thinking ‘This is great,”’ Watson said. “He climbs up there thinking she wants to dance with him. Instead, she starts to strike him and kick him in the groin.”

Three days later, Hogan reported the incident to the Palo Alto Police Department.

According to Lt. Jon Hernandez, Love told police that Hogan had grabbed her crotch as she was being passed around the room.

Watson said that Love never passed over Hogan and that he never groped the singer.

The district attorney’s office reviewed the case and declined to issue a criminal complaint.

It was impossible, said Deputy District Attorney Jack Marshall, to tell exactly who was at fault.

“We felt that if the parties wanted to pursue the matter further, they should do so in the civil court.”

Although Hogan was not hurt in the skirmish, Love’s conduct caused him emotional distress, Watson said. “Mostly, he is incensed by being publicly humiliated in front of his friends,” the attorney said.