Corey Feldman backtracks on Michael Jackson support: 'I cannot in good consciousness defend' him

Corey Feldman is clarifying his statements from earlier this week that seemed to defend Michael Jackson.

Like many people, the Lost Boys star tuned in to watch HBO’s controversial documentary Leaving Neverland, which details disturbing claims made by James Safechuck and Wade Robson that Jackson sexually abused them for years as children. Feldman, who has said he was sexually abused by people in the industry as a child, appeared on HLN Wednesday, explaining this has been “a very emotional time for me.”

Corey Feldman and Michael Jackson (Photo: Getty Images)
Corey Feldman and Michael Jackson (Photo: Getty Images)

“I ask people to put themselves in my shoes,” he began. “You’re a kid who has endured sexual abuse, and during those times I’m looking to somebody like Michael Jackson as a friend, as a big-brother figure. And he was that person to me.”

The 47-year-old actor and activist continued, “However, as you’re friends with this guy, all of a sudden you start to hear more and more accusations being thrown around by various people, and it comes to a point where — as an advocate for victims, as an advocate for changing the statutes of limitations to make sure that victims’ voices are heard — it becomes impossible for me to stay virtuous and not at least consider what’s being said and not listen to what the victims are saying.”

Feldman said it is “important” that people give Safechuck and Robson a “voice.”

“We must allow them to speak, and therefore we also must consider all sides of this, even as uncomfortable as that might be,” he explained.

One thing Feldman isn’t backtracking on is the nature of his relationship with the iconic singer. “Absolutely nothing inappropriate ever happened,” he maintained. “We were friends.”

Related Video: Corey Feldman on Hollywood’s Sexual Abuse Problem

“Again, I don’t want to be perceived as I’m here to defend Michael, because I can no longer do that,” Feldman added. “I cannot in good consciousness defend anyone who’s being accused of such horrendous things, but at the same time I’m also not here to judge him, because again, he did not do those things to me and that was not my experience.”

After Part 1 of Leaving Neverland aired Sunday, Feldman criticized the documentary as being one-sided, with “no chance of a defense from a dead man.” He issued a follow-up statement the next day after being called hypocritical by some on social media.

“I want to be very clear. I stand for any and all victims of sexual abuse or assault,” Feldman told CNN. “As a survivor and someone who has been fighting for this to become a focal topic of our society for decades and is fighting diligently to abolish the statutes of limitations across the country, I applaud all victims for letting their voices be heard and I encourage the public debate to continue.”

However, the actor admitted on HLN he didn’t see the whole documentary, explaining he “watched the first part. … It was very emotional, it was very painful, and I couldn’t watch all of it.” He called the allegations “shocking and disturbing.”

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