Elmo Puppeteer Quits After Renewed Sex Allegations
Q is for quit.
After 28 years, the voice of Elmo has resigned amid renewed allegations that he had a sexual relationship with a minor.
Kevin Clash, the 52-year-old puppeteer and actor known as the voice of Elmo, has been accused of having a sexual relationship with 23-year-old Sheldon Stephens some 7 seven years ago, when Clash was 45 and Stephens was 16.
Clash has always denied the allegations, saying that they did have a relationship, but only after Stephens was of legal age.
Just last week Stephens recanted his story, but now he's changed his mind. Again.
Stephens is now claiming Clash and his lawyers pressured him into recanting to settle out of court for $125,000.
Sesame Workshop released a statement saying,
...none of us, especially Kevin, want anything to divert our attention from our focus on serving as a leading educational organization. Unfortunately, the controversy surrounding Kevin’s personal life has become a distraction that none of us wants, and he has concluded that he can no longer be effective in his job and has resigned from Sesame Street. '
TMZ is also reporting a new lawsuit against Clash by Cecil Singleton, a man who claims they had a relationship was Clash was 32 and he was 15.
Sad. I'm not sure who or what to believe, but I know none of this belongs anywhere near Sesame Street.