Al Porter: "I don’t think I’ve sexually assaulted people in the past"

Al Porter: "I don’t think I’ve sexually assaulted people in the past"

THE quotes come from a recent interview with the comedian.

In an interview conducted with Hot Press just days before sexual assault allegations came to the fore, Irish comedian and tv personality, Al Porter, expressed concern about a "trial by media".

The interview took place on Tuesday, November 14th, just a matter of days before Porter resigned from his Today FM afternoon show following claims of inappropriate behaviour.

In the interview with journalist Olaf Tyaranesen, Porter expressed concern about being subject to a trial by media and distanced himself from any sexual misconduct.

"I don’t think I’ve sexually assaulted people in the past, but I have toured in theatres since I was a child and promiscuous behaviour was the norm.

"It is my experience that if you are in a gay bar if I had a euro for every time I was grabbed or pulled or somebody laid a kiss on me and I wasn’t expecting it at all. That kinda thing happens, for right or wrong."

Porter added that he believed "trial by media isn’t a good thing". We also still have to rely on the fact that if you have been abused or assaulted you should be able to trust the gardai to investigate it.

"We’re at a watershed moment culturally where what is seen as decent and acceptable behaviour is going to change."

When Porter was asked whether or not he felt there had been damaging stories written about him in the media, he said: "I don’t know. Nothing really."

In a statement on Sunday evening following his resignation from Today FM, Porter said:

"I am completely taken aback by reports in the media and on the social networks over the weekend, and by the scale and tone of the vitriol.

"While my conduct, which had been in keeping with my flamboyant and outrageous public persona may be regarded as offensive and unacceptable by many people, I at no time intended to upset anyone.”