A new book released claims that JFK, Jr. was blackmailed into standing by his cousin when he was accused of rape.
According to Daily Mail, John F. Kennedy, Jr. was threatened by a member of his own family to support William Kennedy Smith when he was charged in 1991 for allegedly raping and assaulting Patricia Bowman. Apparently, this family member was believed to have possessed some damaging information that could hurt him if the press gotten a hold of it.
Smith was accused of attacking Bowman after a drinking binge one night in Palm Beach, Florida. JFK, Jr. appeared two times during the trial during jury selection, but his mother, Jackie Onassis, was against it.
All of this is exposed in the book written by Jerry Oppenheimer, RFK, Jr.: Robert F. Kennedy Jr. and the Dark Side of the Dream.
To give a little background on William Kennedy Smith, his mother, Jean Kennedy Smith, is a former U.S. Ambassador to Ireland. He’s the nephew of deceased Sen. Ted Kennedy of Massachusetts and the late President John F. Kennedy.
Information regarding the so-called blackmail against John F. Kennedy, Jr. came from an acquaintance of his — James Ridgway de Szigethy. He was the one who gave a statement to a Congress member in 1993, claiming that Kennedy Smith’s behavior was a family secret. Disturbingly, De Szigethy reportedly said JFK, Jr. told him that “they should have done something about Willie years ago when he first started doing this.” This meant “raping women,” the New York Post writes.
JFK, Jr. reportedly told De Szigethy that he was going against his own wishes, and his mother’s wishes, by standing up for Smith because there was information out there he didn’t want leaked that may damage his reputation. It’s unknown what information that was.
De Szigethy wasn’t happy with JFK, Jr. for making a courtroom appearance even after he allegedly said he was being blackmailed. He recalls asking Kennedy about his conscience over the decision.
“I remember every word of the next two angry questions I asked him. ‘How does it feel to be a character assassin, John? How does it feel to be Patricia Bowman’s Oswald?'”
JFK, Jr. allegedly told De Szigethy of the blackmail threats, “You just don’t understand the pressure I’m under.”
Smith was acquitted on charges of rape and battery after a 10-day trial in Florida. There’s been two other times that he was accused of sexual assault — both by two former employees. One complaint was reportedly dismissed in 2004, while the other was settled out of court in 2005.
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