The Bachelorette contestant Will Gaskins, who is currently vying for Rachel Lindsay's heart on this season of ABC's franchise, says that the fact that DeMario Jackson was black was a reason the Bachelor in Paradise scandal blew up.

Gaskins hopped on social media once production of Bachelor in Paradise was confirmed to commence to share his thoughts.

"So I have largely tried to stay out of the drama; both during my time in the house as well as after my time on the show came to a close but this issue has been one that I have been following closely," Gaskins wrote in a lengthy Instagram post. "I'm glad that from abc's perspective this matter is closed and that is certainly a step In the right direction. But that is not the end of this story."

Gaskins continued: "A lot of conversation has gone back and forth and accusations have flown regarding consent and the ability to give it, primarily from one direction. However one thing which has been largely absent from these headlines is the fact that by all accounts of those present both parties were willing participants in whatever it is that happened that day. And in fact there were multiple other people with whom one party engaged in some type of physical contact with that day but it wasn't until The black man got into the mix that this was deemed as no longer acceptable."

So I have largely tried to stay out of the drama; both during my time in the house as well as after my time on the show came to a close but this issue has been one that I have been following closely. I'm glad that from abc's perspective this matter is closed and that is certainly a step In the right direction. But that is not the end of this story. A lot of conversation has gone back and forth and accusations have flown regarding consent and the ability to give it, primarily from one direction. However one thing which has been largely absent from these headlines is the fact that by all accounts of those present both parties were willing participants in whatever it is that happened that day. And in fact there were multiple other people with whom one party engaged in some type of physical contact with that day but it wasn't until The black man got into the mix that this was deemed as no longer acceptable. We can lie to ourselves and say that race isn't a factor here and pretend that it doesn't affect our day to day lives but it's just that, a lie. It has hurt me these past few weeks seeing someone who I consider a friend get dragged left and right. None of you got to know or see Demario the way that those of us in the house did; if you had you would know that he is one of the most straight forward and caring ppl you could ever care to know. Those first few days he went out of his way to get to know everyone, take time to make sure that some of the guys who may have been having a hard time dealing with the stresses of the day to day of being on the show felt comfortable and at ease. Nobody got a chance to see that side of D, yes he's loud, yes he's a little obnoxious, and yea he should have clearly broken things off with that other woman before pursuing Rachel. but to those who know him he's also the guy you can call when you are in need and he will be there for you to listen, give advice or just make you laugh and crack a smile. I hope that in the coming days, hours and months that he will continue to be vindicated of any wrongdoing and his name will no longer be associated with such a despicable act. Rant over.....for now #freedemario

A post shared by William Gaskins (@thereal_billyg) on


The controversy in question stems from an alleged incident that occurred on the first day of filming between Jackson and Corinne Olympios. Olympios says she was a victim of sexual assault; Jackson says the encounter was consensual. Warner Bros. investigated the incident and found no wrongdoing, and decided to proceed with filming the season. Olympios' lawyer said his team would launch their own investigation. Jackson said his character was assassinated and claims he lost his job over the accusations.

"None of you got to know or see Demario the way that those of us in the house did; if you had you would know that he is one of the most straight forward and caring ppl you could ever care to know," Gaskins wrote. "Those first few days he went out of his way to get to know everyone, take time to make sure that some of the guys who may have been having a hard time dealing with the stresses of the day to day of being on the show felt comfortable and at ease. Nobody got a chance to see that side of D, yes he's loud, yes he's a little obnoxious, and yea he should have clearly broken things off with that other woman before pursuing Rachel. but to those who know him he's also the guy you can call when you are in need and he will be there for you to listen, give advice or just make you laugh and crack a smile. I hope that in the coming days, hours and months that he will continue to be vindicated of any wrongdoing and his name will no longer be associated with such a despicable act."

Bachelor in Paradise is expected to return this summer. The Bachelorette airs Monday nights at 8/7c on ABC.