HOUSTON - Karim “Tyson” Zakikhani, who police say infected his son’s mother with HIV, says he didn’t know he had the virus until after his son was conceived.
Zakikhani gave an exclusive jailhouse interview to investigative reporter Jace Larson five days after KPRC exposed the allegations against him.
According to police, Zakikhani tested positive for HIV years before and knowingly infected his ex-girlfriend.
Zakikhani said the allegations aren’t true.
“This makes me seem like I’m the worst person in the world. I am not,” he said in the interview.
Prosecutors say his medical records from 2008 show he was diagnosed with HIV. Zakikhani said he took an HIV test but the results were not immediately available. He says he made followup calls to the doctor and still didn’t get his results.
One time, he says, a nurse told him that if there was a problem the doctor would call him.
Zakikhani says his ex-girlfriend came forward to police to stop him from raising his 11-month-old son.
Sarita Anderson denies that.
“He's very friendly, charming, outgoing. He likes to talk. He can talk about anything,” Anderson said. “We went to concerts. We went to comedy shows. We went out to eat all the time."
They were intimate, so Anderson suggested both she and Zakikhani get tested for sexually transmitted diseases.
According to the medical records Anderson provided to Channel 2 Investigates, she had not been diagnosed with or treated for HIV prior to September 2013. Anderson said Zakikhani told her he too had tested negative for the virus.
“No, I never asked for any paperwork," she admitted. "I just took his word for it, as he took mine."
In April 2014, Anderson got sick. Then in September came the doctor's devastating diagnosis.
“He said, 'Well, Ms. Anderson, I'm sorry to tell you, but you're HIV-positive.' I said, 'Really? How many tests did you run?' He said, 'We've ran a total of four.'"
Anderson said she was shocked, and then confronted Zakikhani about her diagnosis. She then reported him to police.
Prosecutors at the Harris County District Attorney’s Office charged Zakikhani on June 7 with aggravated assault with a deadly weapon.
He faces 5-99 years in prison, if convicted.
Officer Nathaniel Waldie, with Houston Police Department Family Crime Violence Office, said four people have since come forward to say they may have also been infected by Zakikhani.
Channel 2 Investigates discovered another relationship Zakikhani had prior to his relationship with the complainant. That individual contracted HIV too.
Authorities with the Family Crime Violence Office want to hear from anyone who feels he or she may a victim.
Any potential victims can contact the unit at (713) 308-1100 and will be put in touch with a counselor, an officer or even a supervisor.