Giancarlo Granda says Liberty University head, who quit over sex scandal, knew of his relationship with Becki Falwell ‘from day one’
Giancarlo Granda, the man at the center of a sex scandal involving Jerry Falwell Jr, detailed on Friday how the evangelical leader and outspoken ally of Donald Trump “enjoyed watching” his wife and Granda having sex.
In an interview with ABC News, Granda said he met Becki Falwell and Jerry Falwell, who resigned as president of the Christian, uber-conservative Liberty university this week, at a hotel in Florida in 2012.
Granda, who was 20 at the time, said a relationship developed, which centered around him and Becki Falwell having sex while Jerry Falwell was in the room.
“He was aware from day one of our relationship, and he did in fact watch,” Granda said.
Falwell, one of the most influential evangelical figures in the US whose endorsement of Donald Trump in 2016 helped the president win the Republican primary, has had a remarkable fall from grace over the course of August.
Falwell resigned from the university on 24 August, after Granda first went public with his story, telling Reuters he had a years-long sexual relationship involving the Falwells.
Speaking to ABC’s Good Morning show Granda gave a detailed account of the relationship.
Granda, 29, said he was working the Fontainebleu hotel when he met Becki Falwell.
“I’m talking to some guests and I notice this woman behind me, staring at me, and she was noticeably drunk. And she was just flirting with me, and then we start flirting back and forth,” Granda said.
“Towards the end of my work shift, she’s like: ‘Hey would you wanna go back to my hotel room?’ And as a single 20-year-old I’m like yeah, of course.
“And then she’s like: ‘But my husband wants to watch.’
Granda said: “Immediately I thought it was a bit strange, and I backed off. [Then] she’s like: ‘Oh no, he’s not going to do anything. He’s just gonna sit in a corner and he wants to watch and it’s his thing.’”
An initial sexual encounter developed into a years-long relationship with the couple, Granda told Reuters, with he and Becki Falwell having sex “multiple times a year” while Jerry Falwell watched.
Falwell would later go into business with Granda, buying a Miami hostel.
After Reuters published the interview with Granda on Monday, Falwell denied he was part of the trysts, and suggested his wife had an affair. “Becki had an inappropriate personal relationship with this person, something in which I was not involved,” Falwell said in a statement.
The news also emerged as Politico published a story alleging that Becki Falwell had had a sexual encounter with a former Liberty University student, who was a band mate of her son.
Liberty University, which was founded by Falwell’s televangelist father in 1971, is known for its strict rules over students’ relationships.
“Sexual relations outside of a biblically ordained marriage between a natural-born man and a natural-born woman are not permissible at Liberty University,” the university’s honor code reads.
In a statement to Politico Liberty University reiterated that it has “… policies against employees having sexual relationships with students, as well as having other inappropriate relationships outside of marriage, whether consensual or not”.
In a statement provided to the Washington Examiner, Falwell said the couple had retained a relationship with Granda to try to suppress the relationship. He also accused Granda of attempting to extract “substantial monies” and claimed, without offering evidence, that Granda “may have targeted other successful women”.
Granda told ABC: “That’s false. That’s ridiculous. That’s just them trying to smear me.”