Jason Mitchell, formerly of the hit Showtime series The Chi, was accused of sexual misconduct in May 2019. Since then, it was announced that the actor will be taken off the drama, as well as a string of other upcoming projects, including a Netflix film, Desperados.
Since the accusations against him went public, Mitchell issued a brief response on Instagram, urging his fans not to believe what has been reported. Now, the disgraced actor is speaking with Charlamagne Tha God and DJ Envy at Power 105.1's The Breakfast Club about the scandal. During the interview, he detailed the specific moment he knew things took a turn, where he stands with his former co-star Tiffany Boone, whom he allegedly assaulted, and why he believes the Season 2 showrunner Ayanna Floyd Davis used the #MeToo movement as an "ugly weapon" against him.
"To be honest, I'm not 100 percent sure what the allegations themselves were, [but] I can tell you what happened," he started. "What happened was, with Desperados, we were in pre-production and I went out with a co-worker of mine and she got drunk, and being the person that I am, I felt responsible to make sure she got home... We're in Mexico City, and we're in a foreign land and we should stick together."
He claimed things went left the day after he took her home.
"I make sure she gets home and the next day, it kind of all slapped me in my face," he said. "I'm not sure if her and her significant other had a situation, because I did FaceTime her boyfriend to figure out how to get there and go about getting her home. I felt like I was doing the right thing, but the next day, they canceled rehearsal and everything and they came to me and they were like, 'Jason, we need to talk to you about this activity going on.' So, I told them my side of the story, but I don't know if it was something that I missed."
"Tiffany Boone left the show because she got a better job," he said. "It wasn't like she went around and told everybody, 'Hey, I'm leaving the show. I got a better job.'"
When DJ Envy interjected that it was reported that the actress left the show because she "couldn't take it with you anymore," referring to the claims of him sexually assaulting her, he responded, "Right! Which is completely ridiculous because anybody who knows Tiffany Boone knows that she is the epitome of a Black woman... and if you try her, she will get you together right then and there. She's not taking nothin.'"
The actor stressed that if Boone felt violated, he believes she would not have hesitated in letting him know.
"Had me and Tiffany had a situation where she might have felt sexually harassed, I can bet my bottom dollar that she would have told me about myself in that moment," he added.
The actor also went on to explain that he and Boone learned early on that they did not have a friendly relationship and both decided, "This is just a work relationship. We don't gotta laugh, kick it, none of that."
"I feel like it was a thing that came from Ayanna [Floyd Davis]," he said. "Like I said, she used this #MeToo movement as a really, really ugly weapon... We had a heated discussion and she said that she felt threatened by me."
Mitchell went on to attempt to explain his character and approach to conflict by detailing up his New Orleans upbringing.
"Being from New Orleans, we are the most loving, kind people. We definitely address the world with open arms, hugs, kisses when we enter the room," he said. "What I was sort of getting at [is ] the fact that there's this thing that we have — this light switch. People die everyday in New Orleans, literally. So, when you come from an environment like that, and then you have this sort of culture shock of jumping all the way into Hollywood, you don't really know how to communicate that well, and that's what I really had to work on."
The actor admitted that, with this in mind, he believes he may have inadvertently "intimidated" Davis.
"Even in that heated discussion I had with her, I felt that I might have unintentionally sort of intimidated her," he said. "I can take that L."
"Because, at the end of the day, I do have to take my L and say, 'You know what? I made myself subject to these situations,'" he said. "Had I not went anywhere with this lady and had to drop her off home, I wouldn't be in this situation. Had I not responded to anything that went on with Ayanna, I wouldn't be in this situation."
After being prompted by Charlamagne Tha God, Mitchell added that he is "definitely holding myself accountable" before adding that he does not believe he is being blackballed due to this scandal.
"I think people want to see me do better, and the only way I can really do better is to change my actions," he said. "I can't fraternize. I just can't hang. Period."
"I can't help but feel like, due to what happened with Desperados and me being dropped by my management, I feel like it was just sort of a domino effect with everything," he said. "I think everybody just played 'follow the leader.' I feel like I got hit by a mat truck."
After adding that he is not an "angry Black man," as he claims he is being painted as, he said, "I refuse to let what I've been through jade me."
"I don't want to be the guy walking around with a hand connected to a stick having to shake a woman's hand from way over here because now I'm afraid to be myself because of these situations that may have happened," he said. "Rather or not I shake a woman's hand or put my arm around her, my intentions aren't to be on no sexual weirdness, but I've got to protect myself, so it might just have to be a fist [bump]."
"Stay home," he said. "Stay in my hotel room. Get in that script... I think I was definitely leaving myself in positions that could be looked at any sort of way by anyone. I have a lot of accomplishments to celebrate."
When asked, once more, if he believes he is guilty of any of the allegations made against him, he admitted that he isn't completely certain.
"No," he said before adding that he's unsure. "Well, I'm not really sure. I'm not going to say I'm not guilty of any allegations because I don't know exactly what the allegations are, if that makes sense."
Mitchell did say, though, that if his aggression is in question, "then yeah. I'm definitely guilty of that."
Take a look at the full interview, below: