A woman was raped in a Facebook live video at the Opera nightclub in Atlanta on January 19. The victim has said she was drugged prior to being attacked. The video of the incident first appeared on the victim’s Facebook page on the night in question and has since spread across YouTube and Twitter. The Atlanta Police Department told Heavy.com in a statement, “Early Sunday morning, APD began receiving calls about a Facebook Live video that appears to show a woman being sexually assaulted in a local nightclub. Our Special Victims Unit has made contact with the victim, and an investigation into the matter has been opened. The investigation continues.”
In a subsequent statement, the Atlanta Police Department told Heavy.com, “Atlanta Police Department Special Victims Unit investigators remain in contact with the victim in this incident. The victim is no longer in the state of Georgia, but is cooperating with investigators. Investigators have also identified the male we believe is seen in the video with her and have been in contact with him, as well. Club Opera has been cooperative and helpful to our investigators as we continue to look into this matter. We will not be releasing the male’s name at this time, nor any other details about the Department’s ongoing investigation.”
In a Facebook Live video on January 21, the victim said that she was not going to “address any negativity.” She said that she appreciated all of those supportive messages that she has received. The victim also said that a man she took a photo with earlier in the night, was not the same man who is accused of raping her. She goes on to say that it was the police who asked her not to remove the videos of what happened from her Facebook page as it would have slowed down the investigation. She concludes the video by saying, “They found him… all I want is justice.”
The video shows the woman dancing with a man, in the beginning, she is smiling and sipping her drink. At the time of writing, the Facebook videos of the incident have been viewed more than 500,000 times. Singer Bebe Rexha was among those to have tweeted about the incident. Rexha said on her page that the victim “was drugged and raped while she was streaming on Facebook Live at a night club in Atlanta. She was crying and saying help me and NO repeatedly. Out of Respect I will not share the video. But here is a picture of the man that raped her.”
In a series of Facebook posts on January 20, she first wrote, “I’m ok.” A follow-up post a few minutes later read, “Please no calls/text I’m still gathering myself please.” According to her Facebook bio, the victim is a native of East St. Louis, Illinois, and now lives in Atlanta.
In response to the incident, the victim deleted all of her images from her Instagram page.
The Opera nightclub is among the most famous nightclubs in the U.S. Atlanta Magazine reports that controversial rapper Rick Ross will appear at the venue as part of a pre-Super Bowl party on February 2. In December 2018, security staff at Opera were accused of trying to extort money from patrons.
Heavy.com has reached out to the nightclub for comment on the story.