HARRODSBURG — An arrest warrant has been issued for former Grateful Dead drummer Mickey Hart after a Nicholasville tour bus operator alleged Hart assaulted him at last weekend’s Terrapin Hill music festival in western Mercer County.
Cecil “C.J.” Curtsinger swore out the complaint on Saturday, alleging that Hart took him to the back of the bus, threw him down, hit him and cursed him before a performance by the Mickey Hart Band on Sept. 7. A Mercer judge signed an arrest warrant for Hart on a misdemeanor charge of fourth-degree assault on Monday.
Hart denies the allegations. He wrote on his Twitter account Thursday, "I am totally baffled by a bizarre claim of assault by me coming out of Kentucky, the home of bluegrass and a state I love dearly. Any accusation or claim of assault against me is completely false and without any basis whatsoever."
Hart, 69, was a member of the Dead from 1967 to 1971 and 1974 to 1995, when the legendary California jam band disbanded after the death of frontman Jerry Garcia. Hart continues to tour with his own band and writes books about drumming.