Echosmith drummer Graham Sierota has issued a statement after being accused of being a child predator by Blink-182’s Travis Barker.
Sierota has issued a statement explaining what happened.
“I had invited Alabama to my parents’ big family BBQ along with many other people, and it wasn’t until she responded that I realized her age at which point I apologized to her. I’m really sorry and feel very badly about this. I didn’t realize she was a minor and assumed she was my age. I made a careless mistake and this is a big lesson for me. I would like to apologize again to Alabama, her dad Travis, and her family,” he says.
However Sierota’s family has gone one step further blaming Graham’s behaviour on his diagnosed Autism Spectrum Disorder.
Statement from Echosmith’s Graham Sierota’s family
We have never publicly addressed this in the past, but given the events of the last few days, we feel compelled to speak out now to offer some additional context and insight into the unfortunate misunderstandings that occurred and clear up the deeply hurtful mischaracterizations of Graham. As a child, Graham was diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder. He has difficulty understanding social cues.
Graham’s challenges have always been a non-issue in our family. In fact, it is a truly beautiful and wonderful thing that makes Graham the amazing brother, son and friend that he is. His outlook on life inspires us every day. He’ll be the first one to say “today is gonna be the best day ever,” or, “you’re my best friend and you look amazing today.” He sees the world as the happiest place, where everyone is a potential friend, and he wants everyone to feel included. One very recent Christmas, we hosted a holiday party at our home, and had athletes, musicians, artists, and models show up, and we were very confused until they happily told us “Graham reached out on social media and invited us!” Anyone who has ever met Graham will agree, he is the friendliest and most kind-hearted, welcoming person in the world.
We understand that his interactions were misinterpreted and misunderstood in the confusing world of social media, and we are deeply sorry. Graham certainly never meant to make anyone feel uncomfortable.
As a family, we will continue to work with him to have the right tools and knowledge about social boundaries, and to better navigate and utilize social media while he takes a break from it.
We hope anyone who’s been affected, and in turn felt uncomfortable, can accept our deepest apologies.
~ Sydney, Noah, Graham, Linda and Jeffery
Barker’s daughter Alabama Luella has also posted a statement saying, “Hey guys! I am posting on behalf of the drummer of Echosmith! He had dmed me a while back in 2016 and then once again in July saying I was beautiful and invited me to a bbq at his house. He was very sorry about the situation and regretful. I forgive him and would like this to be over”.
What is disturbing about Alabama Luella’s post is the claim (if true) that Sierota messaged her in 2016. She would have been 9 or 10 at the time.
Travis Barker is yet to respond to Sierota’s statement.