The Truth About Fiona Apple's Time In Jail

Fiona Apple, that '90s musical wunderkind, a classically trained pianist who dropped an album at age 17 and has been selling recordings and racking up awards ever since. Fiona Apple, who would take years to release new recordings — her fifth, 2020's Fetch the Bolt Cutters, came eight years after her previous album, The Idler Wheel Is Wiser Than the Driver of the Screw and Whipping Cords Will Serve You More Than Ropes Will Ever Do. She's generally regarded as a remarkably intuitive and almost hypersensitive poet/singer/songwriter. The New Yorker refers to her "brazen, complex female musicianship" and "radical sensitivity." For her part, Apple told Rolling Stone in 1998, "I'm very thrilled that other people can get something out of my songs, but I write them for myself." In 2000 she had an onstage meltdown at Roseland in Manhattan, and, again from The New Yorker, "instability had become her 'brand.'" And some coping mechanisms work better than others.

There is a Texas town near the border with Mexico called Sierra Blanca. According to the 2010 census it counts 172 families and 553 residents, making it slightly bigger than Fossil, Oregon. Sierra Blanca boasts a statistic it does not share with Fossil: It's where celebrities get busted for possession, among them Willie Nelson, Snoop Dogg, and Armie Hammer, according to the BBC. (Asked why, County Judge Becky Dean-Walker replied, "because they come through here with stuff they shouldn't have.")

She wasn't the first celebrity to grace the Hudspeth County Jail

Apple joined their questionable ranks while touring to support release of The Idler Wheel...  A routine border stop on September 19, 2012, found marijuana and hashish, according to The Huffington Post. She spent the night in the Hudspeth County Jail and bonded out the next day. She didn't speak highly of the experience. At her show in Houston the evening of September 21 (her show in Austin, scheduled for the night before, was postponed, according to Pitchfork), she acknowledged that "most of the people were very nice to me," including the man running the jail, whom she characterized as "a real decent guy," says The Hollywood Reporter. There were, she said, others who were not, whose behavior she characterized as "inappropriate and probably illegal," without going into details. She also said she made notes about the details of the alleged behavior and had hidden them away, as a sort of insurance policy, perhaps guarding against the individuals ever attacking her in public.

A spokesman for the sheriff's office said that if she had a legal complaint, she should contact the state attorney general, reported CNN. The spokesman added, "We'll give her the number if she needs that."