YouTube Star James Charles Apologises For Messaging Underage Boys
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YouTube star James Charles has issued a 'massive apology' after messaging two 16-year-olds on social media.
Charles, 21, shared a video titled 'Holding myself accountable', saying he wanted to tell his 2.5 million subscribers what had been going on.
Explaining that he wasn't reading from a script, Charles began: "Today's video is going to be from the heart and I'm going to focus on what happened - all of the conclusions that I've come to - and most importantly holding myself accountable for my own actions.
"First and foremost, I need to say sorry. I owe a massive apology to anybody that I've hurt or anybody that I made uncomfortable with my actions."
Saying he fully understood how his actions were 'wrong', Charles explained how two people under the age of 18 had come forward to say they had 'inappropriate messages' from him on social media - one being from last year, the other 'more recent'.
Charles said he had added them on Snapchat and 'asked how old they were right away'. Having been told they were 18, he said he 'believed them'.
He then 'engaged in flirty conversation then later on found out they were 16'.
"Upon finding out I was immediately embarrassed and blocked both people," he said.
When their stories came out, Charles initially denied the allegations, saying he felt 'upset'.
He continued: "Looking back, that was so stupid because as I did more research on these topics and self-reflected, I realised [...] that the specific details of the interaction really don't matter because I f***ed up.
"I needed to take accountability for my actions and most importantly apologise to the people that were affected by them.
"These conversations should've never happened, point blank, period. There's no excuse for it."
Charles added: "I take full responsibility for that. I trusted the information that was given to me rather than the information I could have and should have gotten myself."
Saying he should have verified their ages by checking their social media profiles, he continued: "There's no one to blame for this other than myself."
Charles also apologised to the two 'guys involved in this situation', saying: "I'm sorry that I added you, I'm sorry that I flirted with you, and I'm really sorry if I ever made you feel uncomfortable."
The video comes more than a month after Charles denied the allegations against him, having shared a lengthy statement.
The statement read: "There's a video going around about me on TikTok and Twitter of a guy calling me a groomer and I want to address it right away.
"The accusation that I have groomed this person is completely false."
Charles added: "After false allegations like this in the past, I would never knowingly engage with anyone underage and put my life on the line for a few Snapchats.
"Because of situations like this, instead of taking someone's word for it, I will now ask to see the ID or passport of every guy I have a conversation with."