Jake Mcelfresh or more commonly known by his stage name of Front Porch Step is an emo pop rock singer from Ohio. His rise to fame in the last year was topped of by his Christmas EP Whole Again. He went from being unknown to gaining wide-spread popularity in the last 12 months thanks to Vans Warper Tour and his single Aware. However in the last few days his world has been turned upside down after stories of him sexually harassing fans as young as 13 emerged on Social Media.
The first incident is from a girl called Angel from Long Island. She was a fan of FPS for years and on her 16th Birthday he asked for her number to sing her happy birthday. At the time he was in his 20’s. Things turned tour after he started sexting her and made her send him in excess of 50 nude photographs a day. Though she was underage he frequently made attempts to ask her out for drinks and to perform sexual acts upon him. He then made her perform phone sex against her will. When she visited him at Warped Tour he asked her to come to his tour bus for sex which she declined. He proceeded to call her 50 times a day until the two stopped talking.
The next story is probably the most chilling. The girl is called Kylie, after hearing her friends talk about Front Porch Step she decided to Google him. She then found herself on his Instagram where she commented that he was cute. The next morning she was greeted by a comment on her Instagram complimenting her, she replied with a thanks. Mcelfresh then private messaged her asking for her phone number. She felt this strange but in her naivety she gave him her sisters phone number. Jake then asked for a selfie which she sent instantly, she asked for one back to make sure that this was in fact Front Porch Step. The conversation turned to 20 questions which Mcelfresh instigated, the first questions consisted of the what her favorite colours were and such. However the 5th one was ‘What’s your bra size’ she felt the question strange but she answered truthfully seeing no harm in the topic. He then asked for a picture.
At this stage she was shocked but did so in her naivety. ‘No, i meant without the bra, silly’ at this point she was taken aback but headed his request. Over the course of the next month Mcelfresh sent her many nude photos to which she reminded him she was only 13 and ‘This feels wrong’ his answer was ‘It’s only wrong if someone finds out’. After this Kylie blocked the number and told her parents.
In the last few days a half-dozen stories very similar to this have appeared on social media, especially Tumblr, where they have been shared 10’s of thousands of times. A petition has been started to get Front Porch Step taken of the Warped Tour roster as to not have contact to so many young girls, it has 9000 signatures so far.
“I am on vacation, and when I get home, [the Front Porch Step] allegations will be [completely] vetted.”
Kevin Lyman commenting on the Front Porch Step fiasco earlier this week, he said he would be “back to work earlier than expected” to deal with the situation.
In reply to the allegations Mcelfresh tweeted:
In the last year there have been countless members of the entertainment industry brought to light for their sexual behavior especially toward underage girls. In this round it is an individual I would never have expected. I am shocked and appalled at Jake Mcelfresh, I would class myself as a fan of his work. In the past week after sifting through the horde of stories wrote about him I am truly disgusted at the man.
I hope the musical community takes swift and hard action against Mcelfresh to show that the music industry will take a stand against this behavior. Pure Noise Records, his label, has dropped him from the label earlier today. A clear statement from their end is a sign of things to come. There have been some abhorrent stories released in the last few days and I dread to think what else will come of this case.