Before he was charged with criminal trespassing and unlawful assembly days after a video of him allegedly looting at a mall in Arizona during the George Floyd protests went viral, Jake Paul spoke out about the entire situation in a tell-all video.
“As I’m sure a lot of you guys probably saw, I became the number one trending topic on Twitter. People were mad at me because they assumed that me and my friends were looting, vandalizing and breaking down storefronts and that’s the way it looked on camera. However, that isn’t the case, there’s a lot more to not only that story, but there’s tons of other issues and things that we need to address about what’s going on in America right now,” the YouTuber told viewers in the video posted on Wednesday, June 3.
He continued, “I wanted to use my platform to film what was going on and what is going on in our country as we speak, to be able to share and spread the message to the world, and raise awareness that we shouldn’t just be standing there doing nothing. So when we heard that there was going to be protests that were taking place in Arizona, we wanted to be involved and show our support. The story of what happened is actually pretty simple and it was just twisted and exploited by the media to be something that it wasn’t”
For those who missed it, the social media star came under fire after videos posted on Sunday, May 31 by his videographer, Andrew Blue, showed Jake watching as people around him destroyed property and stole things. Although the 23-year-old was not seen participating during the clips, fans were not happy about him being there in the first place.
“We followed people to where everyone said that the protests were happening,” Jake said in the video. “As we started to walk down the street we were blown away by what we were starting to see.”
The internet star explained he saw many storefronts and windows that had broken windows with glass all over the street. He said that he continued walking down the street because they had yet to see people protesting. When he finally got to an area where people were protesting, Jake claimed that he got teargassed by police. When returning to his car, Jake and his friends followed people into the mall, which was where the alleged looting video took place.
“In hindsight, everything’s 20/20 and we shouldn’t have been anywhere near what was going on and we should have removed ourselves from the situation. But in the heat of the moment, I wanted to document what was going on and witness it for myself,” he explained.
One day after he uploaded the explanation, on Thursday, June 4, Jake was charged with “criminal trespass and unlawful assembly,” both of which are misdemeanor charges, according to reports. After his charges went public, the social media influencer took to Twitter and wrote, “Gimme my charges and let’s put the focus back on George Floyd and Black Lives Matter.”
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