Alabama Shakes drummer Steve Johnson has child abuse charges dismissed

Johnson’s attorney said the drummer had “maintained his innocence the entire time”

Just under nine months since he was arrested on charges of child abuse, Alabama Shakes drummer Steve Johnson has now been dismissed of those charges.

The Associated Press reports that a judge in Limestone County, Alabama made the call last Thursday (December 16). He was arrested on March 24 after a grand jury indicted him on charges of wilful torture, wilful abuse, and cruelly beating or otherwise wilfully maltreating a child under the age of 18. He was later released on bail.

In a statement shared with The Associated Press, Johnson’s attorney, Nick Lough, said the drummer had “maintained his innocence the entire time” and noted that Johnson “had to wait for his day in court like so many people do”.


Although the initial charges bore no details on the abuse that Johnson was alleged to have committed, Lough said the drummer was charged over “a spanking incident and nothing more”.

As per, Johnson’s other attorney, Marcus Helstowski, said the drummer “looks forward to spending time during the holidays with his family and children”, and is “thankful he’s no longer subject to prosecution”.

Johnson was initially denied bail due to an arrest warrant for violating a previous protective order, to which he pled guilty to in March 2020. The protection order was issued after Johnson’s ex-wife accused him of threatening and harassing her. She also accused Johnson of choking, injuring and stalking her, as reported by

Alabama Shakes’ last album was ‘Sound And Color’, released in 2015. Over the course of their career, the Athens, Alabama-native group have earned nine Grammy nominations and won four. Johnson was a founding member of the band, performing on both ‘Sound And Color’ and their 2012 debut, ‘Boys And Girls’.

The band went on hiatus in 2018 as lead vocalist Brittany Howard went on to pursue a solo career. Her debut album, ‘Jaime’, was released in 2019.