Yesterday, the British rock band Kasabian announced that longtime frontman Tom Meighan was “stepping down” from the band, “by mutual consent.” They kept the reasoning vague, chalking it up to “personal issues.” Today, those issues have become a lot more apparent. The BBC reports that Meighan has appeared in court, pleading guilty to assaulting his former fiancee in front of a child.
The band made its statement about Meighan yesterday on Twitter. Here’s what they wrote: “Tom Meighan is stepping down from Kasabian by mutual consent. Tom has struggled with personal issues that have affected his behaviour for quite some time and now wants to concentrate all his energies on getting his life back on track. We will not be commenting further.”
Today, in Leicester Magistrates Court, Meighan admitted to attacking his former fiancee in April. He was sentenced to an 18-month community order, 200 hours of community service, five days of rehab, and a small fine. No restraining order was imposed.
In court, the details came out. Meighan threw a hamster cage across a room at his ex-fiancee, hitting her in the head. He also grabbed her leg, hit her in the head, and “threatened to hit her with a wooden pallet.” The child who witnessed the assault called police. Meighan originally denied that he’d assaulted her, and then he told police that he couldn’t continue watching video attack of the assault, that it was “horrible.” Meighan’s lawyer claimed that Meighan has been facing a “battle with alcohol.”
Meighan, 39, has sung for Kasabian since the band began in 1997. They went on to enormous UK success, especially in the 2010s, and they headlined the Glastonbury Festival in 2014. Five of their six albums have hit #1 on the UK album charts.
UPDATE: Kasabian issued another statement following Meighan’s court appearance on Tuesday. “We were left with no choice but to ask Tom to leave the band,” they wrote. “There is absolutely no way we can condone his assault conviction. Domestic violence and abuse of any kind is totally unacceptable.”
“As soon as we found out about the charges made against Tom, we as a band made the decision that we could no longer work with him,” the statement continued. “Unfortunately we had to hold back this information until he was found guilty in court. We were led to believe that Tom would hold his hands up and in his statement tell everyone what he’d done but he chose not to, misleading a lot of fans.”
Read the full statement below.