The Harrowing Truth of Leaving Neverland

Paola Hernandez Olvera, Reporter

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On Jan. 25, 2019, allegations surrounding the late “King of Pop”, Michael Jackson were ignited once again with the airing of “Leaving Neverland”, an HBO documentary focusing on two who accused Jackson of sexually abusing them as children. The Indiana native was previously accused of sexual abuse against minors before his death, and now years post mortem, new allegations against Jackson have arisen, causing commotion amongst long-time Jackson fans and critics. The documentary has left many, along with myself, in shock.

“Leaving Neverland” features Wade Robson and James Safechuck, who were seven and 10 respectively, at the times of the abuse. The documentary shares the two men’s accounts of what allegedly occurred and includes interviews from other children who previously also accused Jackson of sexual abuse.

The documentary premiered at the Sundance Film Festival and aired on HBO on March 3 and 4. Audiences were left stunned by the disturbing accounts of both Robson and Safechuck. Both boys and their families went everywhere with the star and were spoiled with gifts, houses and money. It seemed as if Jackson made sure none of the two families went without. Jackson was most likely grooming the boys and their families. However, nobody noticed.

Unfortunately, Safechuck and Robson were not the only two to have been groomed and abused by Jackson. In 1993 parents of Jordy Chandler, a young boy who considered the singer his hero and often dressed like him, accused Jackson of ‘repeatedly committing sexual battery on their son’. However, Jackson was not charged and instead settled with Jordy and his parents out of court.

After the case with Jordy Chandler, Jackson continued his predatory ways and continued to invite young boys on tours, vacations and to his ranch Neverland, where most of the sexual abuse occurred. In a different documentary about Jackson, he himself admitted to regularly having sleepovers with young boys and having “strong relationships” with the boys. That statement caused concern amongst government officials, which caused them to raid the Neverland ranch, where they found an immense amount of child pornography. Jackson was eventually arrested and charged with committing lewd and lascivious acts with a child under the age of 14.

The documentary revealed the truth behind Jackson’s relationships with all of the young boys he met. Jackson groomed many young boys and their families all with the final intent to abuse the boys sexually. Although many have chosen to label the stories as lies, there’s enough evidence to ring the survivor’s stories true.

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