Foxing have posted a statement in regards to recent sexual assault allegations against one of their members. This statement comes as a clarification of events that transpired with guitarist Ricky Sampson in 2012, before Foxing were an active band. Along with their transparency in this situation, they'll be donating a portion of profits from their ongoing tour with Tancred to RAINN. You can read the full message below.
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“IN REGARDS TO RECENT AND ONGOING ACCUSATIONS
For most of you this post will be news; for others it may serve as clarification. Regardless of how this is reaching you or under what conditions this is going to be lengthy so please bare with us.
There have been rumors spreading relating to an incident that over time has amounted to Ricky now being accused of sexually assaulting a girl he was at one time seeing; some are going as far as calling him a rapist. When we first heard of the story, over three years ago, neither of those terms were attached to it, but the way of the world and the telephone game has created such a behemoth that has gone so far away from the original source. We take these secondhand statements just as seriously as when it was initially brought to our attention and the words and the language were of a completely different nature.
First off we would like to share with you the events; we would prefer to give you as much information as we have on this. Our hope is not to squash, but rather to share a view and open a dialogue. Secondly, this story is his side of the truth and with that we hope that the account is not viewed as, or in any way used as silencing behavior—if you choose to believe his account, please refrain from lashing out at those who do not; it only creates an environment wherein those affected by abuse fear coming forward. Lastly, we have attempted to reach out to the other party involved in order to allow her to approve this statement and no we will not be naming her, so please respect her anonymity unless she desires to break it on her own accord.
For clarification proposes this story takes place in 2012 before Foxing was an active band; the following writing is sexual in nature.
Ricky’s own words:
When I was 17 I was seeing a girl. We were on and off with each other, fairly casual, but I’d be lying if I didn’t say I liked her a lot. She had recently gotten out of a relationship, and made it clear that she wasn’t completely over it. One night she and I went out to dinner with friends. After dinner it started raining so we decided to sit in the car and listen to music; my windshield wipers were shit. We started making out; I felt her up and she put her hand on my thigh. This lead to messing around, which lead to my taking off my pants and taking out my penis; she reciprocated for a moment but shortly after she stopped, looked at the clock on my dashboard, and told me she was going to be late for her curfew; I reluctantly obliged and took her home. (In the e-mail exchange that has been circulating, Josh misspoke and inaccurately described this part of the situation with different details, and while I appreciate him trying to help, it’s important that I clarify and speak for myself). After that night we continued to talk via text. A few days later she informed me that she was going to continue seeing her ex, but still wanted to be friends. A few weeks after this she informed me that she had been thinking about it, and what happened that night in the car made her feel uncomfortable; she explained to me how my actions of escalation made her feel. I had no idea that she felt that way and apologized; the last thing I wanted to do that night was make her uneasy. A while later we began hanging out again, but not romantically, rather somewhere in that weird in-between.. like we would lay in my bed and listen to music, but not engage in any sexual activity. The first time I heard from someone else how that night made her feel and that she was still uncomfortable, I was surprised but also figured that someone was mistaken or just hadn’t heard that we had already talked about it. I heard about it right after she had just left my house after watching a movie, so I immediately contacted her and asked her if she would clarify it for people, but she didn’t feel comfortable saying anything. I felt embarrassed and ashamed of myself; a juvenile act had really affected someone I cared for. Conor, who at the time was friends with her brother also thought it was a misunderstanding, so he called her to see if she would clarify. She didn’t answer; I believe he left a message. She later told her brother that she didn’t feel comfortable talking about it with him, he relayed the message to Conor who subsequently texted her and told her he was sorry for making her uncomfortable. Josh eventually talked to her boyfriend at the time, the main person who was spreading the story around Chicago. Neither of them really saw eye to eye; however, they both agreed that it didn’t constitute assault but rather inappropriate and uneducated behavior. We had friends in other bands sit down with the people disseminating the story, and they also agreed that while it didn’t constitute assault, it was gray, and it made her uncomfortable which makes people feel unsafe, and because of that I was in the wrong. Eventually we heard from friends in the city that it had been dropped by or retracted by all firsthand parties involved, whether or not that is true I don’t really know. Every time that it has been brought up to us since, it’s been from someone not directly involved and usually the details surrounding it vary to the point where it sometimes seems unrecognizable. It’s as if the torch is always picked up by someone new, but each time it gets further away from what it originally was. Maybe it’s just the way things go.
I don’t know what else to say about it aside from being as honest and open about it as I can be from my recollection. This situation has stuck around with me for a long time. I think it’s important that we understand that even though we think that there are certain things that are situationally implied, this can be dangerous thinking, because quite honestly you don’t know what the other person is thinking and if you assume you can end up hurting someone. Since then I’ve learned that it’s important to communicate boundaries. I know a lot of you may be angry with me, and I understand that, I don’t know if you will be as angry as I am with myself. I take responsibility for my part in this. My age is not an excuse, my awkwardness and inexperience in relationships is not an excuse, there is no explanation other than my failure to do the right thing. When I said I was sorry to her, I meant it and I still mean it.
I feel like a lot of time in these types of situations the goal is to save face, but I don’t want to save face, I want things like this to stop happening, and I want to be a productive and positive force in that; I want to learn. If the world chooses not to forgive me for my indiscretions, but in some way it furthers a positive discussion about how we treat people, to me it is worth it. To everyone reading this, I am sorry if I let you down.
In closing, to those of you who have already made up your mind about the situation, we simply hope that rather than diving into name calling, maybe this situation can lead to something of value, regardless of our future as a band. As individuals, one of which has experienced firsthand sexual abuse, we feel committed to combating abuse in all forms. To some this may seem overdue, all we can say is that from our end we believed this was a private matter and the only two individuals involved didn’t want it to be broadcasted. If there is anything we haven’t handled properly in this situation, we are committed to righting our actions and adjusting our behavior in order to make anyone and everyone feel safe. We know that a lot of our fans are younger and we hope that our experience can serve as a lesson on how not to act. We encourage you to do your own research, I’m sure there are places where this is being talked about—we found a thread on Reddit, which we have linked below. We will be donating a portion of our profits from our current tour to RAINN (https://rainn.org).
-Conor, Jon, Josh, Eric, Ricky, Emma
P.S. I want to address the email thread that has been spreading around, which we will attach to the end of this statement. The way that I addressed that particular individual was wrong. I had an air of pretentiousness in my response, I was sarcastic, snide, and lashed out with a disrespectful attitude. It is not a valid excuse to say I was on the wrong side of the bed, that I was depressed, that I was tired of writing long emails about the situation, or that I was put off by their attitude before we started emailing—none of that matters. I acted unfavorably and presented that information in a way that made it appear that I didn’t take his inquiries seriously. When I learned that there was an email chain circling, my first thought was ‘God, I hope it wasn’t with that kid that I was really rude to.’ I know that given the loftiness of everything stated above, this is probably such a small blip, but I just wanted to apologize to anyone who read my personal correspondence and was put off by the way I conducted myself.
– a link to the emails: HERE
– a link to a thread discussion the situation: HERE“