TABOR CITY, NC (WECT) - For the first time since a house paid for by State Senator RC Soles was set on fire, the North Carolina lawmaker is talking about his controversial relationship with a 17-year-old boy who lived there.
In an exclusive interview, Soles spoke with WECT's Bob Townsend to discuss his relationship with Strickland.
"The relationship you had with Strickland and any other clients - has it ever been sexual?" asked Townsend.
"It has not," said Soles.
Allen Strickland lived in the home and said he is now getting death threats. Strickland said he recently filed a report with Tabor Police after receiving a threat on his life.
"I think that people on the street are running their mouths and saying things trying to scare him," said Soles. "If he was scared of me he certainly wouldn't come see me since the fire."
In July the teenager said he was being targeted by an arsonist. Strickland said he had to jump out of the second floor window of his home, purchased for him by Senator Soles, to escape the flames.
About an hour before the fire, Strickland said he heard someone knocking at his front door but never saw who it was.
The FBI is investigating the arson and Soles said he has yet to be contacted by the agency.
"Let me make this clear - not one officer federal, state, or local has asked me anything about this or anything else of any kind of investigation," said Soles.
Strickland said the senator was paying for the home as part of an agreement between the two.
"He told me if I go to school he would put a roof over my head and money in my pocket, and I signed up for school and I will start classes when classes start back," said Strickland in a previous report. "We made a deal and he stuck by it."
Strickland said he used much of the money given to him by Soles to buy a Corvette and a four wheeler. Just days after the fire, Strickland said his four wheeler was hot wired and stolen off his property.
Soles said he has given Strickland money for a house, clothing, and paid for his education but claims he never gave him money for his Corvette or four wheeler.
"I did not have knowledge of any four wheelers or automobile until I saw them," said Soles.
Strickland isn't the only person Senator Soles has supported. He also admits to helping a young man by the name of B.J. Wright who was released from prison Monday morning.
"I am really proud to tell you that he has gotten four certificates from community colleges where he has finished programs," said Soles.
At the end of the interview, Soles said he will remain in the limelight regardless how many questions he answers.
"I could call names and name places and people, prominent people, for one reason or another who would love to see me go down," said Soles. "That's another day and another story, but you may hear about that later on."
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