The Publicist Accused of Sexual Misconduct by Dirty Projectors’ Amber Coffman Has Resigned
UPDATE 1/20: Life or Death PR founder Heathcliff Berru has stepped down from his position and will reportedly enter rehab for substance abuse. He posted the following statement:
There have been several reports about my alleged inappropriate behavior which deserve a response. I am deeply sorry for those who I have offended by my actions and how I have made certain women feel. If I crossed the line of decency or respectfulness in situations when I was drunk and under the influence, there is no excuse of course. To be clear, while my conduct may have been inappropriate, I have never drugged anyone or engaged in that type of behavior. Nevertheless, I do not want to be the type of person who would let drugs or alcohol take command of his life and compromise how he treats people. Yet I have been this person and it’s time to put a stop to all of this. Create a world with one less inappropriate man.
I have been fighting a losing battle against drugs and alcohol for many years and will be checking into a rehabilitation facility in the hope that I can improve my chances of winning that fight. A year ago, I was confronted by a peer and began to try to clean up and make things right with therapy and with an eye towards quitting the addiction. The shame and sadness feels as strong now as it did then and I am making an immediate change.
I have already lost my wife, abandoned my family, and destroyed those I love as a result of my shameful, embarrassing, unacceptable behavior. I deeply apologize to them as well. By no means do they deserve to feel the pain of my actions. Please give them the space they deserve. They were the light at the end of a dark tunnel. I was married during some of these years and hid my problems from everyone well. Especially her and her family. Totally inexcusable.
In no way do these allegations reflect on Life or Death PR, its staff, or anyone associated with the company. These are my issues, not theirs. I could not be more proud of the company and what it stands for. That being said I have stepped down as the CEO and [am] relinquishing all responsibility to the current president, Nick Dierl. The company shouldn’t have to deal with this distraction and I want Nick and the rest of the team to continue to do their good work while I take care of myself.”
ORIGINAL STORY 1/19: Dirty Projectors bassist Amber Coffman took to Twitter last night (Jan. 18) to accuse Life or Death PR & Management founder Heathcliff Berru of sexual misconduct. After Coffman went public, it encouraged many other women in the industry including Best Coast frontwoman Bethany Cosentino to comment on Berru's alleged behavior in the past.
Vulture reported that Coffman began by telling the story of when a "very popular music publicist rubbed my ass and bit my hair at a bar a couple years ago," before eventually naming Berru as the publicist.
Coffman said that when she told her label, Domino, about Berru's actions, they stopped working with him. "They told me they've held their commitment of not working with him ever since, and I really appreciate that gesture," she wrote. "More should follow suit."
Her tweets already prompted Cosentino of Best Coast to add to the allegations:
Life or Death was founded by Berru in 2008. The company represents artists including Earl Sweatshirt, DIIV, Killer Mike and more. Neither Berru nor his company have responded to the accusations yet.