Comedian John Crist has canceled his upcoming tour after being accused of sexual misconduct by multiple women.
A source with knowledge of the situation told Fox News that the launch of Crist’s Netflix special “I Ain’t Prayin’ for That” is currently “on hold.” The streaming platform was supposed to release the special Nov. 28.
Crist released a lengthy statement on Thursday calling his behavior “destructive and sinful.”
“Over the past number of years, various women have accused me of behavior that has been hurtful to them,” Crist said to Charisma News. “While I am not guilty of everything I’ve been accused of, I confess to being guilty of this — I have treated relationships with women far too casually, in some cases even recklessly. My behavior has been destructive and sinful.”
He continued: “I’ve sinned against God, against women and the people who I love the most. I have violated my own Christian beliefs, convictions and values, and have hurt many people in the process.”
After months of gathering information from multiple accusers over the last seven years and keeping the names of the victims anonymous, the Christian publication released a detailed report Wednesday with accounts of the “clean comedian” allegedly manipulating women and attempting to leverage his fame, “initiating sexual relationships with married women and women in committed relationships” and “offering show tickets in exchange for sexual favors.”
he report comes after Crist, 35, and country singer Lauren Alaina, 24, ended their relationship in September.
A homeschooled son of a pastor, Crist is known for his satirical Christian humor. He has two million followers on Facebook, one million followers on Instagram and millions of views on YouTube.
“I am sorry for the hurt and pain I have caused these women and will continue to seek their forgiveness,” Crist said. “I have also hurt the name of Jesus and have sought His forgiveness.”
He added he has “privately sought and received professional treatment for my sexual sin and addiction struggles,” saying that he is “committed to getting healing and freedom from my sin” and has canceled all future gigs until he is “healthy spiritually, mentally, and physically.”
An account from 2017 shows Crist’s alleged sexual harassment, which according to the accusers is part of a repeated pattern of behavior: start a conversation on social media, flirt and then engage in sexting or other sexual activities.
Crist agreed to do a senior project with one woman, and after admitting to the girl, who idolized Crist, and her boyfriend that he was a “sex addict,” he allegedly asked for her number, added her on Snapchat, invited her over and got her “on the verge of blackout drunk” before attempting to sleep with her.
“‘It’s OK. He’s a Christian. He won’t do anything inappropriate,'” she thought, but she said he “grabbed her and tried to kiss her…he told her in crude terms how much he wanted to have sex with her.” At his apartment, the woman said Crist “again grabbed her, crudely propositioned her for sex and begged her to stay.”
She said she escaped in an Uber and told her boyfriend about what happened the next morning, adding that Crist later messaged her that the previous night was “the best night of [my] life” and that he couldn’t stop thinking of what he wanted to do to her.
Other women said they haven’t gone back to church after Crist harassed them and told them to keep quiet.
“The church should not be looking the other way when a Christian leader is preying on women,” J. Lee Grady, director of The Mordecai Project—a ministry that confronts the abuse of women globally, told Charisma. “When Jesus talked about wolves in sheep’s clothing, I’m sure He included sexual predators in that metaphor. This guy may be a comedian, but sexual harassment isn’t funny. This behavior needs to be challenged, and the victims need counseling and support.”