DeMario Jackson Alleges He 'Got Played' on Bachelor in Paradise — but Doesn't Blame Corinne Olympios
"I'm not sure by who, but I got played.," Jackson said in an interview with E! News on Tuesday
In the second of a two-part interview with E! News on Tuesday, the former BiP contestant opened up further about the sexual encounter between him and Corinne Olympios, 25, that caused production on the Bachelor/ette spin-off to be shut down over two weeks ago.
“I get home on Thursday and it hits the press on Sunday night. I got a call by a producer that was just like, ‘Hey, s— about to get real, real fast,’ ” Jackson, 30, said in the televised interview.
“I hang up my phone and holy s— my group chat was on fire. Like, ‘What did you and Corinne do?! You guys broke Paradise!’ My dad’s like, ‘Son, what’s going on?’ I’m like, ‘I don’t know,’ ” he continued. (Both Warner Bros. and a spokesperson for Olympios had no comment.)
Production on season 4 was subsequently halted after two producers voiced their concerns about the incident between the two contestants, sparking a flurry of accusations and speculation regarding the incident — but on June 20, Warner Bros. announced the investigation had concluded and the show was set to resume filming.
“It’s every man’s biggest fear,” Jackson said about him being associated with the words “sexual assault” in the wake of the controversy.
He continued: “No man wants to be attached to that. That ruins you for life. That’s something that sticks with you. When I have children, they’re going to Google their dad’s name and this is going to pop up. That’s my biggest fear.”
Immediately after news of the incident broke, and before either he and Olympios released statements about the filmed sexual encounter, Jackson claimed that negative words such as “rapist,” “whore” and “slut” were being associated with the pair.
“They were slut-shaming her because of what she did last season with Nick. For me, again, back to the human race, like we failed,” he said.
Jackson also opened up about one of the two producers who voiced their concerns about the sexual encounter — which he made sure was documented by cameras — and claimed that “the producer was not present to watch the tape.”
“She overheard. And now you’re like, ‘What? Like what the hell is going on?’ She heard over a Walkie Talkie later on in the night when Corinne was drunk that Corinne and DeMario hooked up. Then all of a sudden you find out she has a boyfriend and she promised her boyfriend that she wasn’t going to cheat in Paradise,” he explained.
For Jackson, he believes that “conspiracy” surrounds the incident: “It goes back to the very beginning when [Corinne] came up to me, hopped in my arms, led me to the pool. By now I’m realizing that I got played.”
Though Jackson doesn’t feel that he “got played” by Olympios, he does claim that he “got played in general.”
“I’m not sure by who, but I got played,” he said.
Despite the ongoing controversy, Jackson admitted that he still has affection for Olympios.
“She’s experiencing the same thing that I am,” he explained, and added, “I’m mad at the situation. I would like to really ask her, ‘What happened?’ because there’s so many different angles.”
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Since the scandal broke and he returned home from the set of Paradise, Jackson has been comforted by his castmates, who he regards as “extremely supportive.”
“Its been humbling that you can meet people for three days — I knew them for less than 72 hours — and in that timeframe, they went to bat for me and they spoke of my integrity and who I was as a man and what I did on set,” he said. “I went into this as the villain, you know, quote on quote, and then they got the chance to see the real me.”
In a statement obtained by PEOPLE after production was halted, Olympios said, “I am a victim and have spent the last week trying to make sense of what happened on June 4. Although I have little memory of that night, something bad obviously took place, which I understand is why production on the show has now been suspended and a producer on the show has filed a complaint against the production.” Although Warner Bros.’ investigation has concluded, Oympios’ attorney previously told PEOPLE that their own investigation into the incident will continue.
“The tapes will show that everyone, all of the participants of the Bachelor, everyone was consenting to what was going on,” Jackson’s attorney, Walter Mosley, told PEOPLE exclusively earlier this month. “And certainly his interaction with Corinne was a consensual interaction.”
But last week, Warner Bros. said in a statement that the company “does not intend to release the videotape of the incident,” but insists that they “plan to implement certain changes to the show’s policies and procedures to enhance and further ensure the safety and security of all participants.”
Bachelor in Paradise will return later this summer on ABC.