For years, choreographer and dancer Wade Robson defended the late Michael Jackson. Now, the 29-year-old is singing a different tune, says Billboard on May 9.
Robson now says the late pop star molested him as a child.
As a child, Robson appeared in three of Jackson’s music videos and often slept over at his house. During Jackson’s 2005 trial for molesting children, a then-22-year-old Robson took the stand to defend him, saying the singer had never sexually abused him.
Now, seven years later and four years after Jackson’s death, Robson is recanting his testimony and claiming that Jackson did, in fact, molest him during the years they worked together.
Jackson’s family is rejecting the claim as opportunism.
“This is a young man who has testified at least twice under oath over the past 20 years and said in numerous interviews that Michael Jackson never did anything inappropriate to him or with him,” a lawyer for the Jackson estate told the New York Daily News.
“Now, nearly four years after Michael has passed, this sad and less than credible claim has been made. We are confident that the court will see this for what it is,” the lawyer said.
In 1993, Robson (then age 10) gave a startling interview to CNN in which he stated, “We sleep in the same bed. We’re both fully dressed. He sleeps on one side. I sleep on the other.”
In interviews, Jackson called the act of sleeping with children “normal.”
But Robson’s lawyer says his client had repressed the memories for years and only remembered the incidents recently, after suffering a nervous breakdown.
“Last year, on a career trajectory that was off the charts, he [Wade] collapsed under the stress and sexual trauma of what had happened to him as a child,” Henry Gradstein told TMZ.
Robson is a professional choreographer who has worked with artists Britney Spears and Justin Timberlake. He has also appeared on the reality dance show “So You Think You Can Dance.”
Gradstein claims that Jackson threatened and brain-washed Robson, saying that if he ever told anyone about what happened “our lives will be ruined forever.”
During Jackson’s 2005 trial, a former maid testified that she once saw Jackson and Robson showering together. But when Robson took the stand, he admitted to sharing a bed with Jackson prior to age 14, but told lawyers that they had not showered together, and that Jackson never molested him.
“I can tell you right now that if he had, I wouldn’t be here right now. I wouldn’t stand for it,” he testified at the time.