A day after filing to run as the Libertarian candidate for Illinois governor, Grayson “Kash” Jackson found himself explaining allegations of domestic violence leveled by his ex-wife dating back to 2010 — claims that he calls “outright falsehoods.”
Among the allegations outlined in a 2014 petition for an order of protection, Jackson’s ex-wife said he tried to choke her during sex, and that he punished his 6-year-old son by forcing him to move bricks on a cold day in the middle of winter, according to the documents obtained by the political news website Capitol Fax.
The alleged choking episode occurred during a trip to Seattle in 2014 when the woman said she “was trying to work on our relationship,” and “he put his hands around my neck until I pushed him away,” the petition says.
His ex-wife also filed for orders of protection in 2015 and 2016, claiming that Jackson “physically disciplined our children by slapping in the face or leaving marks or spanking leaving bruises on bottom [and] backs of the legs.”
On Tuesday, Jackson, a retired U.S. Navy officer from Antioch who changed his name last year from Benjamin Winderweedle, acknowledged the brick-moving incident with his son, saying he was out there in the cold with the boy in warm winter clothes. But he called the other allegations “bald-faced lies.”
“Not only have her allegations caused me a great deal of embarrassment, it’s forced me to fight uphill to be a father to my children,” he said, adding that he has made divorce-law revamp part of his platform. “It’s a bastardized, broken system that needs to be overhauled. We have actual victims that are ignored, while other people make flagrant allegations.”
Libertarians filed nearly 48,000 signatures Monday for a slate that included Jackson for governor and other candidates for statewide office — almost double the 25,000 signatures needed to run. Jackson would appear on the ballot as “Jackson, Grayson Kash formerly known as Benjamin Adam Winderweedle until name changed on Aug. 29, 2017.”
Before that, though, he’ll need to come up with about $3,000 in child support payments he owes to the his ex-wife. Late last month, Lake County Circuit Court Judge Joseph Salvi issued an order stating Jackson would be jailed for six months for contempt of court if he doesn’t pay about half of the $6,067 he owes by Aug. 6, court records show.
“I will come up with the money and pay that,” Jackson said.
Jackson also owes money to his first ex-wife, to whom he was ordered to pay nearly $16,000 in back payments last year — when he spent a few nights in jail for contempt of court, according to the Daily Herald.
That newspaper reported last month on the allegations in the divorce documents — which then became fodder for a segment on Comedy Central’s “The Opposition with Jordan Klepper” — but Jackson called it “politically convenient” that the documents began circulating among other news outlets the day after he filed his signatures.
“I’m not going to shy away,” he said.
Jackson says he has paid “over $100,000” in child support to both women over the years.