Earlier in the week, Soundgarden offered its latest lawsuit to Vicky Cornell, the widow of Chris Cornell, this time wanting her to turn over social media passwords. Cornell has now responded to the suit.
Soundgarden's remaining members Kim Thayil, Matt Cameron, Ben Shepherd and band business manager Rit Venerus have filed a suit against Cornell in Washington state U.S. District Court asking for the passwords, or for Cornell to post "Soundgarden has temporarily suspended its official social media accounts due to pending litigation" on all channels.
Yesterday, Cornell's Instagram story shared a statement from the singer's manager, Ron Laffitte, writing "During my six years working with Chris Cornell and Soundgarden, Chris and Vicky always controlled all of Soundgarden's social media accounts, both directly and through their own personal social media representative. At no time were any other members of Soundgarden involved, and this was true both before and after Chris died. Because of this, Soundgarden's attempt to seek an injunction in connection with the social media accounts is surprising to say the least."
Vicky's lawyer, Marty Singer also posted a statement: "Ms. Cornell's forthcoming motion will expose the truth about Soundgarden's supposed social media accounts. Ms. Cornell created the social media accounts; grew the accounts by allowing them to trade on Chris' then-existing, popular accounts; devoted her personal time and money in growing these accounts as Soundgarden displayed absolutely no interest in social media (unless it was to promote their solo projects). Ms. Cornell has overseen these accounts for close to a decade. The fact that Soundgarden is unaware of the user-names and passwords for their alleged 'own' accounts confirms their utter lack of involvement in creating, growing and maintaining their alleged accounts.
"Soundgarden solely wants the social media accounts in order to maliciously defame Ms. Cornell, provoke her online stalkers (as Matt Cameron has done continuously) and to instigate third-parties to harass Ms. Cornell and her minor children. Moreover, while they now claim a sense of urgency, Soundgarden's claim are a stale repacking of the claims that they filed in the Florida court in May of 2020."
In addition to this suit, the band and Cornell are wrapping up a suit regarding allegedly withheld royalties. U.S. District Judge Michelle Peterson recently ruled that Soundgarden is not withholding what Chris Cornell's widow Vicky Cornell said is “hundreds of thousands of dollars” in unpaid royalties, and that the band’s manager did not breach any perceived duties to look after Vicky's best interests.