Local News

Assault Victim Files Lawsuit Against Uncle Kracker

Posted January 18, 2008 1:03 a.m. EST
Updated January 18, 2008 12:21 p.m. EST

— A woman filed a lawsuit against country-rock-rap artist Uncle Kracker this week, nearly four months after he pleaded guilty to assaulting her at a Raleigh nightclub.

The woman was seeking at least $20,000 in punitive and compensatory damages from the singer, whose real name is Michael Shafer.

In September, Shafer submitted an Alford plea to a misdemeanor charge of assaulting a woman. He originally faced a felony charge of second-degree forcible sex offense.

The Alford plea allows a defendant to plead guilty while still maintaining his innocence. It acknowledges that there is enough evidence against him that a judge or jury might convict him.

Police arrested Shafer, who was in town for a performance, at the Embassy Suites in Cary on Aug. 17, 2007, after a 26-year-old woman accused him of committing a sex act against her at the Ess Lounge in Raleigh.

Prosecutors claimed Shafer stumbled down some steps, put his hand under the woman's skirt and touched her "buttocks and vaginal area." The woman exchanged words with Shafer and slapped him, and then Shafer slapped her, prosecutors said.

The two did not know each other, police said.

The Michigan native jump-started his career in the mid 1990s as a disc jockey for Kid Rock. He sold 2 million copies of his debut solo album, "Double Wide," released in 2000, and had hit singles with "Follow Me" in 2001 and a cover of the 1973 Dobie Gray single "Drift Away" in 2002.