"Mail Online" article author releases unauthorized interview - KNOE 8 News; KNOE-TV; KNOE.com |

"Mail Online" article author releases unauthorized Robertson interview

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MONROE, La. (KNOE 8 News) - KNOE 8 News has learned that the author of a widely publicized article about Phil Robertson written on Sunday said he was a member of the congregation.

Sources close to the family say that Will Payne, the author of the "Mail Online" piece visited the church without any knowledge that he was a reporter for the British tabloid.

Payne was in West Monroe over the weekend to follow the ongoing story in which Phil Robertson was suspended from "Duck Dynasty" after his statements about homosexuality and marriage.

The author was featured on CNN's "Anderson Cooper's 360" on Monday saying that Robertson invited him into the White's Ferry Road Church of Christ. He also said that he secured the interview by luck, chance, and being in the right place at the right time. Robertson was leading a Bible study in which he stood by his original statements in an article featured in "GQ Magazine."

On Monday night, a statement from the family said that "He (Payne) was not authorized for coverage nor did he make his intentions known to immediate members of the family to our knowledge."

KNOE 8 News has tried to secure comments from the Robertson family over the initial "GQ" article. Multiple interview requests have been denied by the publicity agency representing the Robertson family. Will Payne has also not responded to our request for an interview.

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