Becki Falwell has denied claims that her evangelist husband Jerry watched her having sex with a Miami pool boy as she broke her silence on the scandal on Tuesday and said she wished people were more forgiving.
Giancarlo Granda, now 29, claims he was picked up by Becki in 2012 at the pool of the Fontainebleau hotel in Miami, where he was working. He has given a series of interviews to various outlets, sharing differing degrees of detail about their dalliances.
He claims Jerry knew about the affair, watched them having sex, including once in his Speedos.
Becki – who was blamed by her husband for the entire scandal on Sunday – said that was not true.
In an interview with The Washington Post, she said: ‘I wish Christians and people would be as forgiving as Christ was’.
Jerry called Granda’s claims ’90 percent false’ and said he stepped down from Liberty not because of him but because he was ‘starting to get bored’.
‘I’ve accomplished all I can accomplish and I want to move on. i was starting to get bored.’
Earlier in the day, he quoted Martin Luther King Jr, telling a local reporter in Lynchburg, Virginia: ‘It’s a relief. The quote that keeps going through my mind this morning is Martin Luther Ling Jr: “free at last, free at last, thank God almighty I’m free at last.”‘
Giancarlo Granda says Jerry Falwell Jr. watched in his Speedos while he had sex with his wife Becki, both in person and through a video camera feed, over the course of six years
There was no sign of the couple at their farm in Cifax, Virginia, on Tuesday afternoon as the scandal raged on
The large property in Cifax has a lake and several buildings. Neither Jerry nor his wife was spotted
There was a Liberty University police car at the family home on Tuesday
In his interview with Politico, Granda said she targeted him after watching him talk with girls his own age.
‘During my work shift at the Fontainebleau Hotel in March 2012, I was chatting with some girls my age (20 at the time). Becki said, “Those girls don’t know what they’re doing, you need someone with more experience,”‘ he said.
The pair went back to her hotel room at her suggestion, he claimed, which is where he says she brought up Jerry – the head of Liberty University at the time – and said he ‘liked to watch’.
TRANSCRIPT OF 2018 CALL BETWEEN JERRY, BECKI AND GIANCARLO
Becki to Jerry: Gian’s been very busy.
His new thing is like telling me every time he hooks up with people, like I don’t have feelings.
Jerry: You’re going to make her jealous Gian
Becki: A week ago I was in tears for a whole freakin’ day. He was like “I hooked up with this girl on Tinder and I got her an Uber” and I’m like completely depressed.
Giancarlo: Come on..
Becki: Maybe the more you tell me the more I’ll get used to it.
Giancarlo: You don’t care about me anymore Becki…
Becki: Uh yeah really? Obviously
Giancarlo: I just tell you because you’re my best friend.
Becki: I know, I’m trying to be OK. I’m like, accepting that position, but I’m kind of… so yeah.
I’m trying to. I’ve taken a lot. I’ve moved on, I’ve matured.
Becki: I’m not as crazy as I used to be I would think, I don’t think.
Giancarlo: No… you’re perfect.
Becki: Yeah… gotta keep that up…This is new.. even before when you weren’t dating somebody it just kind of threw me for a loop
‘She goes, “But one thing.” And I’m like, “Okay.”And she’s like, “My husband likes to watch.” And just then he comes out and he’s wearing a Speedo,’ he said.
Over the course of the next six years, he claims he and Becki had sex several times a year, in hotel rooms in Miami but also at the Falwell’s home in Virginia.
‘He enjoyed watching us in person and also remotely through video cameras. He also listened to our phone calls,’ Granda claimed.
Jerry Falwell Jr. claimed on Sunday night, before Granda’s side of the story became public, that Becki had an affair with the young man that he did not know about at first and that it devastated him when he found out about it.
He said he was not involved in it, and that they maintained a relationship with him for years afterwards on the advice of lawyers because Granda was unstable and unpredictable.
Falwell Jr. claims Granda has been trying to extort the pair for years.
Granda insists he is trying to get out of a business they run together – an LGBTQ hostel in Miami that the Falwells invested in and gave him the run of after they met.
The entire saga led to Falwell’s resignation from Liberty this week.
Many have labeled him a hypocrite for running such a strict religious institution and telling students how to behave while allegedly engaged in a sordid, sexual triangle with his wife and Granda.
It is not the first scandal to rock the Falwells and shake their connection to Liberty.
In 2019, Falwell settled a lawsuit with a different young man – Gordon Bello – who claims he had a ‘personal relationship’ with Becki.
He claimed that he was entitled to a stake in the hostel and sued the couple for it. The matter was settled privately with an undisclosed monetary sum that Falwell Jr. agreed to pay Bello.
Separately, Falwell Jr’s relationship with a personal trainer has also come into question.
In 2011, Falwell and his wife had personal training sessions with Benjamin Crosswhite, a 23-year-old Liberty graduate.
By 2019, he’d acquired an 18-acre racquet sports and fitness facility on land that was formerly owned by Liberty. He signed it over to him in 2016 without the young man having to put down any of his own money, according to Reuters.
In 2016, Falwell signed the deal transferring the facility to Crosswhite.
The contract says the price is $1.2 million, but notes that the ‘Net Purchase Price’ is $580,000, because Liberty ‘agrees to credit’ Crosswhite with rental payments for seasonal use of the site´s tennis courts through 2025. The courts are used by Liberty´s tennis team for practices and tournaments.
Liberty ‘agrees to finance the purchase’ at a 3% interest rate, the contract says.
To help Crosswhite in the transaction, Liberty was lending Falwell´s fitness trainer more than half a million dollars to buy its property. The university would receive no cash up front from the sale, the contract shows.
Last year, Falwell Jr. settled a lawsuit with Gordon Bello (left) for an undisclosed amount after he claimed he’d been stiffed out of his stake in an LGBTQ-friendly hotel. Bello also claimed he’d had a ‘personal relationship’ with Becki. In 2016, Liberty signed over a fitness center to personal trainer Benjamin Crosswhite (right), who flew with the Falwells on their private jet and trained them. Even though Liberty sold the property to him, it also gave him the money for the sale
Giancarlo with the family on a trip to Washington DC in September 2018. That year is when both sides say their relationship soured
Falwell, picture above with his wife and Trump, flew Granda in 2012 to Liberty University to meet the president
Crosswhite claimed at the time that he and his wife ‘bought’ it from Liberty.
LIBERTY ACCEPTS FALWELL JR’S RESIGNATION
On Tuesday, Liberty announced it had accepted Falwell Jr’s resignation, saying in a statement:
‘The Liberty University Board of Trustees acted today to accept the resignation of Jerry Falwell, Jr. as its President and Chancellor and also accepted his resignation from its Board of Directors. All were effective immediately.
‘After agreeing yesterday to immediately resign then reversing course, Falwell, through an attorney, sent the resignation letter late last night to members of the Board’s Executive Committee pursuant to the terms of his contract of employment. The Executive Committee met this morning and voted to accept all the resignations immediately and recommend ratification to the full Board. Later this morning, the full Board gathered via conference call and unanimously voted to affirm the decision of the Executive Committee. Falwell’s severance compensation was dictated by the terms of his pre-existing employment agreement without any adjustment by the University or its Board.
‘The Board, composed of a mix of alumni, pastors and business executives, active and retired, used most of its meeting to focus forward on the university’s future and steps that could be taken to ensure it remained true to its mission. The Board set its next meeting in Lynchburg to select a search committee for its new President.
‘Acting Board Chairman Dr. Allen McFarland, said, “I am so encouraged by the unity of Christ that I saw exemplified by our Board today. Liberty University’s future is very bright and in capable hands of leaders who are committed to being good stewards of what the Lord has entrusted!”
‘Jerry Prevo, who will stay on as Acting President, said, “Our students are ready to be world changers as Champions for Christ. Their spirit is strong as they look to the future. I intend to do all I can to nurture their spiritual side as they grow academically and enjoy all our campus has to offer.”
Falwell was the fourth president of Liberty University, assuming the role after his father, Liberty founder Dr. Jerry Falwell, Sr., passed away in 2007. He previously served as the university’s general counsel. During his time as president, Falwell Jr. oversaw more than $1 billion of ongoing or planned construction as the campus was almost entirely transformed with new world-class academic buildings and athletics facilities. He worked with university leadership to achieve record enrollment in residential and online programs, which now stands at over 100,000 students.
‘The university’s heartfelt prayers are with him and his family as he steps away from his life’s work.’
He also accompanied the couple on Liberty’s private jet to Miami for his annual physical, saying he needed to be there to explain to Falwell’s doctor how his diet and exercise program impacted his health.
The controversy erupted after Giancarlo Granda, 29, spoke out on Monday in an interview with Reuters where he contradicted Falwell’s claims that he was trying to extort the pair and had an affair with his wife, and gave more details about his alleged sexual relationship with them.
He said he was 20 when he met the pair in Miami and that starting in March 2012, he had sex with Falwell’s wife Becki several times a year in hotel rooms, sometimes while Falwell Jr. watched, until 2018.
‘Becki and I developed an intimate relationship and Jerry enjoyed watching from the corner of the room,’ Granda said.
During that time, the trio went into business together with an LGBTQ-friendly hostel in Miami that Granda runs.
He said that he was used as a ‘target’ for the couple’s ‘sexual escapades’ and that he was not trying to extort the pair, even though he threatened to go ‘the kamikaze route’ if they didn’t give him what he wanted.
He sat down with Reuters earlier this month. They went to Falwell Jr. with Granda’s claims, which is what prompted his statement on Sunday night.
Granda described the liaisons as frequent – ‘multiple times per year’ – and said the encounters took place at hotels in Miami and New York, and at the Falwells’ home in Virginia.
On Sunday night, Falwell Jr. – a prominent Trump endorser and one of the most influential right-wing Christians in America – told The Washington Examiner that he and his family were being extorted.
He said Becki had an affair with Granda that he had ‘no involvement in’, and that he’d chosen to forgive his wife.
Granda claims the opposite.
He showed Reuters texts from Becki where she said she was ‘missing him like crazy’ and also gave an audio recording of her complaining about hearing about the other women Granda had been intimate with.
Falwell Jr. was also on the call and told him that he was going to make his wife ‘jealous’. ‘He’s like telling me every time he hooks up with people. Like I don’t have feelings or something,’ Becki said.
Falwell then chimed in: ‘You’re going to make her jealous.’ Granda replied: ‘I’m not trying to do that.’
He insists he was trying to negotiate a buyout from the hostel business and that he was not extorting the pair.
In one text to them, he said: ‘Since you’re okay with ruining my life, I am going to take the kamikaze route.
‘It really is a shame because I wanted to reach a peaceful resolution and just move on with our lives but if conflict is what you want, then so be it.’
In his statement on Sunday night, Falwell Jr. said, in part: ‘Becki had an inappropriate personal relationship with this person, something in which I was not involved…it was nonetheless very upsetting to learn about.’
Granda’s friendship with the Falwells eventually soured, he said, in part because he wanted to dissolve his ties with the couple and fell into a business dispute with them.