Stephen Collins on molestation scandal: ‘I did something terribly wrong’

Former “7th Heaven” star Steven Collins has stayed out of the limelight since a recording was leaked two months ago that featured him admitting to molesting children. But now, the embattled star is speaking out, admitting to People magazine that he was sexually inappropriate with three young girls.

"Forty years ago, I did something terribly wrong that I deeply regret,” the once-squeaky-clean star stated. “I have been working to atone for it ever since. I've decided to address these issues publicly because two months ago, various news organizations published a recording made by my then-wife, Faye Grant, during a confidential marriage therapy session in January, 2012. This session was recorded without the therapist's or my knowledge or consent."

"On the recording, I described events that took place 20, 32, and 40 years ago," Collins added.

Collins explains how from 1973 to 1994 he had inappropriate sexual contact with minors, adding he has “not had an impulse to act out in any such way" in the last 20 years.

The actor, who is involved in a messy divorce from Grant, stated that he heavily debated whether or not to directly apologize to his victims.

More On This...

    "I did have an opportunity to do so with one of the women, 15 years later. I apologized and she was extraordinarily gracious," Collins continued. "But after I learned in the course of my treatment that my being direct about such matters could actually make things worse for them by opening old wounds, I have not approached the other two women, one of whom is now in her 50s and the other in her 30s."

    The now disgraced star is set to do interviews with Yahoo and ABC later this week.

    Click here for more from People magazine.

    WATCH: Four4Four: 'The Interview' terror threat shocker