Published Aug 01, 2013Jack White and Karen Elson's split in 2011 initially seemed amicable, as White continued to release his ex-wife's music through his Third Man Records label, and the pair even threw a divorce party. Now, things have turned ugly, as Elson has obtained a restraining order against her former husband.
According to the City Paper in Nashville, TN, the two have been battling over custody rights regarding their two children. It seems that White wants to play a role in raising them, while Elson contends that he's an unsuitable parent. They have also clashed over the settlement terms of their divorce.
The documents say that White has been sending frequent emails and text messages, and Elson apparently "fears for her and the children's safety as a result of this harassment." Allegedly, White has criticized Elson for being in touch with musicians who the garage rock mogul feels have "ripped off" his work, and he's had "inappropriate and aggressive" dealings with his ex-wife's paralegal.
The order reads, "This pattern of husband's bullying wife into submission was a contributing factor in the demise of their marriage." Elson has reportedly asked White to attend family counselling but he said no. Now, White is banned from having "any contact with wife whatsoever except as it relates to parenting time with the parties' minor children."
The restraining order was signed by a judge and served on July 22. The pair will attend a hearing over their custody dispute on August 29.
This is surprising news given the couple's public dealings in the past, although it's worth pointing out that White's temper has gotten him into trouble before. In 2003, he got into a fight with Von Bondies frontman Jason Stollsteimer and subsequently pled guilty to assault and battery.