On Wednesday night’s The Daily Show With Trevor Noah, Oprah Winfrey sat down with Noah and explained why she still stands by the interview she did following HBO’s Michael Jackson documentary, Leaving Neverland. Winfrey told Noah that she “never wavered” despite recent news that there may be a timeline discrepancy in James Safechuck’s story.
“I had girls at my school who were sexually assaulted and abused. And I have never won a case,” she stated. “When you put a girl on the witness stand and she can’t remember was it Thursday or Wednesday, it’s automatically discredited.”
In an interview with the Daily Mirror, biographer Mike Smallcombe claimed there’s a discrepancy in Safechuck’s story of alleged abuse.
“The deficiency in Safechuck’s story is this — construction on Neverland’s train station didn’t start until the latter part of 1993, and it didn’t open until the first part of 1994, when Safechuck was 16. So abuse in the train station wasn’t possible if the abuse stopped in 1992, as he claims in his testimony, as it didn’t even exist then. There’s a two-year difference.”
Leaving Neverland’s director, Dan Reed, maintains the documentary is accurate.
However, Smallcombe believes that Leaving Neverland was poorly investigated.
Winfrey explained to Noah that it is typical of sexual assault victims to misremember details of their assaults.
“When you’re in the midst of trauma, something terrible is happening to you. You may not remember the exact time,” she said. “It was that hotel, but it was that hotel. ‘Oh, it probably never happened.”’
Fans remain divided on Michael Jackson’s innocence.
Despite receiving hate, Winfrey explained her Leaving Neverland special was worth it in the hopes that it will help people understand the patterns of sexual abuse.
“People call it molestation, but there is a big seducing that goes on and the pattern of that seducing,” she explained. “And that was important enough for me to take the hateration for.”
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