UNITED STATES—Gayle King, 65, has received death threats after an excerpt of her interview with WNBA star Lisa Leslie regarding Kobe Bryant’s sexual assault case, which was released on February 4 by CBS.
CBS released an excerpt to promote King’s interview with Leslie. In the clip, the interview pinpoints where Leslie was asked by King if she felt Bryant’s legacy was complicated due to the sexual assault charge against him in 2003, which was later dismissed in criminal court.
The incident was in reference to the Colorado case where Bryant was accused of rape by a hotel employee at The Lodge and Spa at Cordillera. The criminal case against the basketball star was dismissed, but a civil suit was settled out of court for an undisclosed amount.
Leslie indicated that she did not believe it complicated his legacy, to which King continued asking questions around the topic. Leslie ends the interview with, “And I think that that’s how we should leave it.”
The broadcast journalist received backlash on social media, including from rapper Snoop Dogg who took to his Instagram account to scold King. In the video, he warns King to back off “before we come get you.” Snoop states in his video that he feels King was “out of pocket” for asking Leslie about Bryant’s sexual assault case when she never asked anyone about Harvey Weinstein’s sexual assault cases. He later posted a response to his first video by saying, “I’m a non-violent person” stating he was speaking “for the people.”
King said in a video response via Twitter on Thursday, February 6 following the backlash that the clip was shared out of context and expressed her anger at the network she works for. The journalist has been traveling with security as a result of the multiple death threats she has received.