HBO’s The Defiant Ones is tackling the legacy of legendary rapper Dr. Dre, but it’s also examining his dark moments, including him taking responsibility for his 1991 assault of female journalist Dee Barnes.
In the recent episode of the HBO doc series The Defiant Ones, the N.W.A. alum discussed how he got physical with journalist Dee Barnes during an interview in 1991. Dre admitted that the incident was one of the “stupidest” things he’s ever done in his life.
“This was a very low point in my life,” said Dre. “I’ve done a lot of stupid shit in my life. A lot of things I wish I could go and take back. I’ve experienced abuse. I’ve watched my mother get abused. So there’s absolutely no excuse for it. No woman should ever be treated that way.”
He continued, “Any man that puts his hands on a female is a fucking idiot. He’s out of his fucking mind, and I was out of my fucking mind at the time. I fucked up, I paid for it, I’m sorry for it, and I apologize for it. I have this dark cloud that follows me, and it’s going to be attached to me forever. It’s a major blemish on who I am as a man.”
The incident was notably excluded from 2015 film Straight Outta Compton, which prompted his ex Michel’le to detail being abused by the rapper, referring to herself as “a quiet girlfriend who got beat on and told to sit down and shut up.”
The rapper pleaded no contest to misdemeanor battery in connection with the attack and Barnes sued for $22 million, with the case being settled out of court.