Less than a week after production was abruptly shut down on Bachelor in Paradise — the sexually charged follow-up show of The Bachelorette — the accused in the mysterious scandal, DeMario Jackson, is speaking out. The alleged victim in the situation, Corrine Olympios, is also saying her piece.
Last Sunday, Bachelor production company Warner Bros. released a statement saying that production would be suspended for a “thorough investigation.” Multiple reports, based on on-set sources’ accounts of what happened, speculate that the investigation is looking into the alleged filming of a sexual encounter between the two contestants.
After days of speculation and hypotheses put forward by countless sources, Jackson released a statement of his own to media.
“It’s unfortunate that my character and family name has been assassinated this past week with false claims and malicious allegations,” said 30-year-old Jackson. “I will be taking swift and appropriate legal action until my name is cleared and, per the advice of legal counsel, will be seeking all available remedies entitled to me under the laws.”
On Wednesday, Olympios, 25, also communicated with the press about the incident.
“I am a victim and have spent the last week trying to make sense of what happened on June 4,” read the statement. “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.
“As a woman, this is my worst nightmare and it has now become my reality. As I pursue the details and facts surrounding that night and the immediate days after, I have retained a group of professionals to ensure that what happened on June 4 comes to light and I can continue my life, including hiring an attorney to obtain justice and seeking therapy to begin dealing with the physical and emotional trauma stemming from that evening.”
Olympios has hired Hollywood veteran lawyer Martin Singer.
Inside sources have told People magazine that Olympios and Jackson were heavily intoxicated on the night of June 4, and the pair had an allegedly non-consensual sexual encounter. No other details have been confirmed or proven.
While Warner Bros. claimed that the show was put on a “temporary” hiatus, People‘s source says that Bachelor in Paradise will not be airing this summer due to the seriousness of the accusations.
“There are no authorities involved, no law enforcement … but the incident was flagged internally and they take these matters seriously, so they’re looking into it. But Bachelor in Paradise will not be resuming — this summer at least.”
The network and production company have not yet confirmed if this upcoming season is, in fact, cancelled.
Host of the show, Chris Harrison, responded to the emerging scandal surrounding Bachelor in Paradise.
Harrison, the host of the show, has also spoken out about the scandal.
“By now, no doubt, you have heard that we have suspended production on this season’s Bachelor in Paradise,” he said. “I can confirm to you that this is sadly the case. Out of respect to all involved, there’s only so much I can and will say at this time. Normally with a situation like this I would not say anything until the incident is fully resolved, but with all the rumours and misinformation being put out there, I don’t find that to be possible anymore.”
Harrison asserts that safety of competitors and crew are the top priority.
“Let me start by saying the safety and care of the cast and crew of our show is of the utmost importance to us,” he continued. “It is with this thought in mind that we made the decision to suspend filming. An investigation into the situation was started immediately. Warner Bros. is handling the details of that investigation. They’re moving quickly to gather all the facts, and once that’s done, a clear, concise decision can be made about where we go from here. There are a lot of competing details in the various press accounts of the incident. And there’s a lot of misinformation out there too. We urge everyone to be patient until the investigation is complete.”
“I know in this day and age we want — and even expect — immediate answers, but in this case, it’s just not possible. So again, I urge you to please be patient and respect the privacy of the parties involved. I will keep you as informed and up to date as I possibly can. We’re sorry for any inconvenience and disappointment this may have caused the cast, the crew and our loyal fans. It is my sincere hope that we can come to a quick resolution on this and get back to work very soon.”
On June 11, the cast of this season’s Bachelor in Paradise was spotted at the Puerta Vallarta airport, where they were reportedly being flown to Houston, Texas while the show took a break from filming. Again, it is unclear where the participants are now, or whether the show will ever resume shooting.
The fourth season of Bachelor in Paradise was slated to premiere on Aug. 8. First premiering in 2014, the show ships former Bachelor and Bachelorette contestants to a house in Mexico. The cast then continues its search for love with each other, with new potential suitors and lovers showing up every week.