Back in August 2021, Spencer Elden – the man who, as a four-month-old baby, was photographed naked for the cover of Nirvana’s Nevermind LP – sued the band for possessing and distributing “commercial child pornography” that resulted in Elden “suffer[ing] lifelong damages.” Now, the grievance has been dismissed for a third and final time because its statute of limitations ran out.
This past Friday (Sept. 2), U.S. District Court Judge Fernando M. Olguin ruled that Elden waited too long to issue his lawsuit, effectively ending the year-long dispute and preventing Elden from trying again for a fourth time.
“In short,” “Olguin declared, “because it is undisputed that [Elden] did not file his complaint within 10 years after he discovered a violation . . . the court concludes that his claim is untimely.” He added: “Because plaintiff had an opportunity to address the deficiencies in his complaint regarding the statute of limitations, the court is persuaded that it would be futile to afford plaintiff a fourth opportunity to file an amended complaint.”
In response, Bert Deixler – a lawyer for Nirvana – told Reuters: “We are pleased that this meritless case has been brought to a speedy final conclusion.”
After Elden’s original suit was rejected (because he missed a deadline to respond to Nirvana’s request to dismiss), he re-filed in January 2022. Unsurprisingly, the band’s legal team grew increasingly impatient with him, claiming that “no amendment is possible to salvage [his] claim. . . . In his ever-shrinking pleading, Elden has now dismissed all but one of the myriad state and federal law claims he previously attempted to charge against defendants.”
Those who’ve been following the case closely will remember that Elden recreated the Nevermind cover in 2016 (for its 25th anniversary). Undoubtedly, that decision also played a part in all three of his case dismissals thus far.