Jail’s New “Best Friend”: Rex Orange County charged with Sexual Assault


Sofie Jarvis

Rex Orange County performs in front of a packed crowd.

Sophia Choi, Staff Writer

Alexander O’Connor, better known as Rex Orange County, was charged with six counts of sexual assault this October in Britain. An extremely popular indie artist, O’Connor allegedly assaulted a woman over two days in and around his home in Notting Hill, London. 

The hit singer and songwriter first released his album in 2015, but his rise to fame began in 2017 with his hit songs, “Best Friend,” and “Loving is Easy.” The success of these two hits led to a collaboration with Tyler, The Creator, another rising artist at the time. O’Connor was featured in two songs of Tyler’s album, “Flower Boy,” which helped propel his music career. Since then, O’Connor has amassed over 16 million monthly listeners on Spotify and a loyal fan base. 

Months before the allegations, O’Connor released one of his most successful albums, “Who Cares,which landed number one on Billboard’s Top 100 and was later performed at Radio City Music Hall. 

According to the UK tabloid, The Sun, O’Connor sexually assaulted the victim twice in London’s West End on Jun. 1, once in a taxi and three times in Notting Hill at his own home the following day. 

Recently, O’Connor announced the cancellation of his tour in Australia, Europe and New Zealand, due to “unforeseen personal circumstances.” He claimed he would be spending time at home and would continue his tour as soon as he could. However many fans suspect that he canceled his tour due to the allegations, knowing that they’d soon become public. 

Later that year on Oct. 10, O’Connor appeared at the Southwark Crown Court, where he pleaded not guilty to the charges and was released on unconditional bail. Shortly after, a spokesperson for O’Connor released a statement to the public.  

“Alex [O’Connor] is shocked by the allegations, which he denies, and looks forward to clearing his name in court,” the spokesperson said. “He is unable to make any further comment because of the ongoing proceedings.”

His official trial is set for Jan. 3, 2023. 

While the relationship between O’Connor and his victim is still unknown, many fans have shown their disappointment through various social media platforms. O’Connor has received major backlash with comments on TikTok and Instagram but has not yet released an official statement. Given the blow to his reputation, O’Connor’s music career is likely over, regardless of the outcomes of the trial.