Details of New Found Glory guitarist Steve Klein's arraignment have gone public after multiple charges of lewd conduct with a minor were made against the musician last December.
Klein had been accused last year of video chatting with underage girls on an adult website. He pleaded not guilty to two counts of lewd conduct with a minor under the age of 14, three counts of lewd conduct with a minor 14 or 15, one count of intent to commit lewd acts with a minor, and one count of possession of child pornography.
The guitarist was not jailed after his December arraignment, and awaits his next court appearances on March 20 and April 10. Klein's lawyer, Debra White, tells AltPress that the musician "will continue to remain free after all of his court appearances."
New Found Glory had announced on their Facebook on December 11 that Klein was no longer part of the band due to "differences" with his bandmates, but offered no other explanation for his departure. The specifics of Klein's alleged behavior and the charges made against him have only now gone public.
White released a statement in defense of Klein that stresses the guitarist never had actual physical contact with the girls and believed them to be 18 or older during their chats. She also mentioned that the minors in question are unknown -- no one knows who they are, and so no one can know their true ages.
"Steve is devastated by this accusations," White wrote. "He has lost his band, his livelihood, and his ex-wife continues to push for full custody using this case... Despite this heavy hand, Steve remains strong and hopeful that he will be vindicated."
New Found Glory spoke out again on their Facebook after White's statement was published. "Steve made us aware of the possible allegations...against him," the band wrote. "At that point, not knowing all the details, we made the decision to part ways in order for him to deal with these personal issues."
Klein will not return to the band, but the remaining bandmates expressed their excitement over their recent tour and said they plan to make a new album.