Axl Rose’s Days In Hiding As A Fugitive Rockstar

While crazy stories from rock music history may seem too exaggerated or wild to be true to some, they certainly did happen since we have first-hand personal accounts and police reports. These tales should not actually surprise anyone, considering that the rock and roll world has been defined by drinking, drugs, sex, fights, and deaths through decades.

Although things get serious sometimes and have unpleasant consequences, these sorts of stories are one of the most entertaining aspects of the rock scene for many music lovers. In the past, the biggest names of the business hit the headlines multiple times with their outrageous on and off-stage antics.

As a notorious rock band, Guns N’ Roses, unsurprisingly, has a wealth of wild stories, starting from their early days in the mid-1980s. Axl Rose is undoubtedly the perfect candidate for the craziest member of the band, with his colorful lifestyle and eccentric personality. The singer has also faced numerous legal issues due to his unpredictable nature. On one occasion, Rose had to live as a fugitive for some time as he hid from the police over an alleged rape charge.

As the story goes, this serious incident happened in December 1985 while Guns N’ Roses was still an underground band playing gigs in California’s famous clubs and bars. One day, a 15-year-old girl named Michelle stepped into one of GNR’s rehearsals. Yet after spending some time there, the girl ended up running naked in the streets.

The band members knew Michelle because she was frequently hanging around Sunset Boulevard. While it is unknown what exactly happened there, Slash claimed that the girl had sex with Axl Rose, and then he threw her out. Yet hours later, the police were back at the band’s door, looking for her assailants. Rose evaded the officer’s questions about the incident by hiding behind some equipment.

Rock journalist Mick Wall recalled in his book ‘Last of the Giants: The True Story of Guns N’ Roses’ that Axl actually boasted about having a sexual encounter with another girl while the police were at his door. He said, “While the cops are out there harassing everybody, asking their stupid questions, I’m with this girl behind the amp, and we start going at it. That was the rush! I got away with it! It was really exciting.”

In the following days, Michelle’s parents pressed charges of statutory rape against Axl and Slash. The two musicians quickly vanished when they learned there was a possibility of a mandatory five-year jail sentence. Slash moved somewhere else, while Axl slept in parking lots and bathrooms in gas stations and cheap restaurants.

However, Rose needed some other place to hide safely. So, Slash called their then-promoter/manager Vicky Hamilton and begged her to accept Axl at her home for a few days. She eventually agreed, and Axl hid there as a fugitive rock star for some time. During an interview with Daily Mail Online in 2015, Hamilton recalled that period and Axl’s words on the incident.

“One night, Slash called me up and said, ‘Can Axl come and sleep on your couch for a couple of days?’” the manager remembered. “I said, ‘Why?’ and he said, ‘Oh, the police are looking for him – something to do with a girl.’ I started thinking, ‘Oh God, I’ll be harboring a fugitive,’ but then I just said, ‘Okay yeah, sure.’”

Vicky continued, “He said it was consensual, but he’d thrown her out of the studio and locked her out without her clothes, and she was mad. He went to court for it months later, but the charges were dropped.’” So, Axl Rose swore to Hamilton he hadn’t raped Michelle but seeing a 15-year-old girl running naked didn’t go unnoticed by the officers.

Even though Axl was meant to stay at Vicky’s for a few days, it ended up being six months. Hamilton also found Axl a lawyer to represent him on the rape charge. Ultimately, the charges against the singer and Slash were dropped due to a lack of hard evidence. We can’t really know what exactly happened there between Rose and the underage girl, yet the incident took its place as one of the sensational moments in the rocker’s career.