In part two of Anderson Cooper 360's look at the consequences of social conservative George Rekers' experiments on young children to alter their perceived sexuality, Rekers denies culpability in the suicide of one of his victims.

Rekers made headlines last year when the Miami New Times exposed the ex-gay leader as having hired a male prostitute off the pageviews of gay website Jo-Vanni Roman was paid by Rekers to escort the 62-year-old on a European vacation. In various interviews, Roman claimed Rekers was gay, saying he provided his client with daily body rubs in the nude while the pair vacationed, but added that he never slept with his traveling companion.

The scandal forced Rekers to resign from the board of the National Association for Research & Therapy of Homosexuality (NARTH), an ex-gay group that claims being gay can – and should – be cured.

Cooper's three-part special report looks at the shattered life of Kirk Murphy. At the age of 5 Murphy's mother enrolled him in a government-funded gender research study helmed by Dr. Ivor Lovaas and Rekers, then a doctoral student, at UCLA, in which Rekers attempted to “spank” the gay out of Murphy, who preferred playing with dolls over trucks.

Rekers called the experiment, which subjected Murphy and other children to various punishments to alter their behavior, a success.

“In 1974, Lovaas and Rekers jointly published a paper about the boy they renamed 'Kraig,' heralding his treatment for 'childhood cross-gender problems' a success and claiming he had been transformed from a 'gender-confused homosexual-in-waiting' to a healthy, heterosexual young man,” Cooper reports on the program. “On the back of this study, Rekers built a career as an anti-gay activist and a supposed expert in childhood sexual development. He co-founded the Family Research Council and championed reparative therapy to turn gay men straight.”

In 1985, Murphy acknowledged to his family that he was gay but he was never able to develop a committed relationship. In 2003, at the age of 38, he committed suicide. (Video of part one of Cooper's special report The 'Sissy Boy' Experiment is embedded in the right panel of this page.)

Rekers denied his therapy played a part in Murphy's death, telling CNN it “would be inaccurate to assume” Murphy killed himself as a result of the experiments.

“But I do grieve for the parents now that you've told me the news,” he added. “I think that's very sad.”