Well-known Wichita DJ off air after sexual-harassment allegation
WICHITA, Kan. (KWCH) - A former Wichita radio personality shared his story after he said he was sexually harassed in the workplace by a well-known fellow DJ on 93.5 FM. Thursday afternoon, Eyewitness News learned Greg “The Hitman” Williams has been taken off the air as the station investigates.
In response to the allegation, Williams offered the following statement he shared on his public Facebook page:
“The allegations being spread on social media by a former employee can never be proven because they are not true. I will share more at the appropriate time in the appropriate way.”
Eyewitness News looked into the situation after Johnny Starks detailed what he said happened in a Wednesday night Facebook post that’s been widely shared. Eyewitness News spoke with Starks Thursday afternoon. He started working for Power 93.5 about six months ago to host the afternoon drive-time slot. Starks has worked in radio for years and moved to Wichita from Chicago.
“Right now, I’m hurt. I’m angry,” said Starks, known as “DJ Koolout” on air.
During his few months at Power 93.5, Starks said he had a good working relationship with Williams. He said it felt like he was “part of a family,” with Williams welcoming him “home” when he started working in Wichita after moving from Chicago.
After his show each afternoon, Starks said he would go to Williams’ office for feedback.
“He was not shy on giving me credit because ratings went up, and I was excited because he was acknowledging you were doing a good job,” Starks said.
He said last Wednesday, a little after leaving Williams’ office, he went to the bathroom.
“Finish doing what I’m doing, washing my hands. I go to dry my hands. All of a sudden, the door comes open; startles me, scares me,” Starks recalled.
Starks said it was Williams and he started to come near him and placed his hand on his chest.
“I’m just uncomfortable. I’m not really sure what’s going on, but as he’s close to me and his hand is on my chest, with his other hand, I can hear him opening up his pants,” Starks said.
He said he quickly got out of the bathroom and left the building. The next day, Starks said he went looking to tell someone what happened, but said Williams called him into the station vice president’s office and he was terminated.
“You didn’t even give me a chance to go to anybody’s office because you pull me into an office and say, ‘we’re letting you go today,’” Starks said. “Then, what really added insult to injury, when Jackie Wise tells me I have to sign a confidentiality termination paper.”
He said the reason given is he wasn’t a good fit for the station.
Starks filed a police report after being fired and said he detailed what happened.
“I wanted to control the narrative. I sent it to the HR. I sent it to the president of Audacy. Now, mind you I filed a police report when I left, after I was terminated because I knew I needed something on paper. Not going to sit here and be okay with being a victim; I’m just not. I’m not because I have too much to lose,” he said.
In a statement, an Audacy spokesperson said, “We’ve recently become aware of certain allegations made by a former employee against Greg Williams. We take these issues seriously and will investigate them fully. While we investigate, we will have no further comment.”
The company said that Williams will be off the air while they investigate.
In sharing his story on Facebook, Starks said he couldn’t stay quiet doing noting and was thinking about his daughter.
“I’m not going to tell my daughter or my son that I allow somebody to take advantage of me and not stand up for myself. Like my daughter, ‘why are you not on air?’ How do I explain that to a 9-year-old? Well, ‘it’s just the way business is?’ No. What do I tell her when some guy touches here? What do I tell her when some guy grabs her butt?” he said. “No.”
Starks said, thinking back, there were some incidents and comments that now serve as red flags.
“Especially when he got drunk. One night we were out and he fell asleep at the table and I helped him to the car, he’s touched me in places he shouldn’t have but I was like ‘okay, he was drunk,’ and he did that more than one time,” Starks said.
He said he’s also looking to take legal action, including pressing charges and filing a wrongful termination lawsuit. Eyewitness News will continue to look into this story.
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