George Michael’s ex Kenny Goss recalls ‘fateful day’ of singer’s infamous 1998 arrest and outing

George Michael

George Michael’s former partner, Kenny Goss, has opened up about the “Careless Whisper” singer’s infamous arrest in April 1998 and subsequent outing in the media.

The pop superstar sparked a media frenzy after he was arrested for “engaging in a lewd act” in a public toilet in Beverly Hills, in what later transpired to be a police sting operation.

In an interview with Radio Times ahead of the upcoming Channel 4 documentary, George Michael: Outed, Goss reflected on his then-partner’s arrest and the ensuring headlines about the singer’s sexuality.

Recalling the “fateful day” that had the world’s press knocking on their door, Goss recalled helicopters circling above the house while “just trying to understand the situation and reassure George that everything would be OK”.

Goss added: “He was stressed out. He took to his bed, then the next morning, we got up, and I told him, ‘Yep, still a few helicopters up there’.”

Michael had been dating the former flight attendant since 1996, but had stated that cruising for sex was not an issue within their relationship.

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The late George Michael and his partner Kenny Goss a
George Michael with Kenny Goss. (Junko Kimura/Getty Images)

Goss went on to explain that while the pop star “didn’t know what to do or what was going to happen”, he had a “plan of action,” and wanted to go out for dinner that very evening so that people could see that he was in good shape.

Michael was fined $810 (about £500 at the time) and ordered to undertake 80 hours of community service for the incident. Goss said that he spent a large amount of time worrying about the former Wham! star for the rest of their relationship.

“From the moment he was arrested, when he wasn’t with me, there was always a little bit of me, thinking, ‘Is he going to be OK?’” Goss continued.

“I was always worried about what might happen, that he might get into trouble again.”

Soon after the scandal, Michael released the music video for “Outside“, which featured men dressed as police officers kissing, police helicopters and couples engaging in sexually suggestive acts in public spaces.

Goss, who was with Michael until 2009, also revealed that his former partner was a “tortured soul”.

“When I talked to him in later years, I always closed by saying, ‘We all love you, remember that. You have a lot of people [who] love you'”, he added.

Michael died on Christmas Day 2016. Rumours of a film about his life have been swirling almost ever since, and The White Lotus actor, Theo James, is the latest name to be linked to an £85 million biopic.

George Michael: Outed, airs on Channel 4 on 6 and 7 March.