Arizona Republic has revealed more details from the report former MEGADETH bassist David Ellefson filed with the police department in Scottsdale, Arizona alleging unlawful distribution of sexually explicit images of Ellefson by unknown offenders.
In the report, Ellefson admitted that he had been sexting with a Dutch teenager who had captured video of their encounters without his consent. The bassist said he first met the woman when he was signing autographs at a 2019 concert in Holland. They struck up a friendship and continued chatting through social media. The second time he saw her in person was in February 2020, when they met in a Dutch hotel lobby for coffee and soda. He stated there was no physical contact and they just had a conversation. He also claimed that there has never been any sexual physical contact between the two.
According to Ellefson, his interactions with the woman didn't turn sexual until "July or August" of 2020, when they they engaged in "a consensual virtual sexual encounter" for the first time over Facebook Messenger. The woman would have been 19 at the time of their first virtual sexual encounter. "He stated they had about four to five masturbating encounters," the report said. The last online sexual encounter was around February 2021.
The 56-year-old Ellefson, who lives in Scottsdale, first became aware of the video — which was taken by the woman without his knowledge or consent using the video feature on Facebook Messenger — on May 9, when the claim "David Ellefson of MEGADETH is a pedophile" appeared on Instagram.
Ellefson told police that MEGADETH's management was made aware of the allegation, and the management informed the bassist that the accuser had harassed other members of MEGADETH in the past and advised him to "sit tight" as it would likely "blow over." Two hours later, the video of Ellefson masturbating emerged online and quickly went viral. The woman later admitted to Ellefson to having made two or three videos and sharing then with some friends but said she wasn't sure how they got leaked to anyone else.
Ellefson told police he was notified on May 14 by MEGADETH that the band would be parting ways with him. Three days later — which would have been May 17, according to the timeline provided by the Arizona Republic — he was fired.
On May 24, Dave Mustaine — who formed MEGADETH with Ellefson in 1983 — announced the bassist's departure from the band, saying, "We do not take this decision lightly. While we do not know every detail of what occurred, with an already strained relationship, what has already been revealed now is enough to make working together impossible moving forward," Mustaine wrote. Two days later, Ellefson released a follow-up statement in which he vowed to file a "defamation lawsuit" against the person who "illegally posted a very private video" of the bassist and made "false allegations" against him. He also said he was working with the police in Scottsdale "in their investigation into charges regarding revenge pornography to be filed against the person who posted the video. This person will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law," Ellefson wrote. He went on to say that he was "taking this time to be with my family" and wished his "bandmates" the best with their upcoming tour.
MEGADETH has yet to announce a replacement for Ellefson, who was in the band from its inception in 1983 to 2002, and again from 2010 until his latest departure.
David, who became a Lutheran pastor nearly a decade ago, and his wife Julie Ellefson have been married for 27 years. They have two children, Roman Alexander (25) and Athena Grace (22).