Conor Oberst addresses rape accuser's retraction

'I have accepted Joanie Faircloth's apology and retraction to clear my name,' Conor Oberst says

On Monday, a North Carolina woman retracted her claims and apologized for accusing the singer-songwriter Conor Oberst of raping her after a 2003 concert.

Joan Elizabeth Harris, who wrote as "Joanie Faircloth," made the accusations in the comments section of an XO Jane article a year ago, where they quickly spread on Tumblr.

"The statements I made and repeated online and elsewhere over the past six months accusing Conor Oberst of raping me are 100% false," she wrote in a notarized letter. "I publicly retract my statements about Conor Oberst, and sincerely apologize to him, his family, and his fans for writing such awful things about him."

Now Oberst has officially responded to the letter, and accepted her apology. 

"I have accepted Joanie Faircloth’s apology and retraction to clear my name," Oberst wrote in a statement. "This has been extremely difficult and stressful for me personally and for those I love. I’m appreciative of the family, friends, fans, and business partners who supported me throughout this and look forward to happier times as we all move forward with our lives."

The founding Bright Eyes member had always vehemently denied the allegations, calling them "absolutely, unequivocally false" in a prior statement. But the yearlong spread of the rumor did cast somewhat of a pall over the release of his acclaimed new album "Upside Down Mountain."

Reps for Oberst could not confirm if Oberst's reported $1-million defamation lawsuit against Harris would still go forward. Oberst had said any winnings would go to charities combating violence against women. 

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