Kevin Clash, the man known as the former voice of Elmo in "Sesame Street", is facing a third lawsuit for alleged sexual assault. The man identified as S.M. and later referred to as John Doe claimed in his filing that he engaged in a sexual relationship with the voice actor when he was minor.
The new accuser declared he met Clash in Miami Beach in late 1995 or early 1996, when he was 16 or 17. He was later persuaded to visit Clash in New York with promises of plane ticket, money and "being a 'dad' to him." During his stay in NY, they engaged in sexual contact including oral and anal.
The plaintiff said he didn't know about Clash's occupation until he came to the actor's apartment in New York. He's seeking minimum $75,000 in damages for his "severe injuries, including but no limited to mental, personal and psychological trauma" that's "continuing and permanent."
The man becomes the fourth man accusing Clash of having an unlawful sex with minors. The first man, Sheldon Stephens, came out with such story in early November. He later recanted his accusation against the 52-year-old puppeteer after reaching an agreement with the actor.
Stephens was, however, thinking about taking back his recantation when a second man, Cecil Singleton, came forward suing Clash for $5 million on a similar allegation. The scandal continued to snowball into a second lawsuit when a third man identified as John Doe filed a new accusation.
The three plaintiffs are represented by Jeff Herman. "Kevin Clash knowingly paid to transport a minor across state lines for the purpose of satisfying his sexual interests," the lawyer said. Of John Doe No. 2, he said being a "compliant victim", his client was not aware of the full extent of his injuries until this year.
Clash has denied any wrongdoings in response to all the three accusations. His reaction to the latest one is no different. Calling it "without merit," his lawyer says in a statement to E! News that they will "vigorously defend the case and Mr. Clash's reputation."
Clash resigned from his position as the voice of Elmo after the second accuser filed a lawsuit against him. "Personal matters have diverted attention away from the important work 'Sesame Street' is doing and I cannot allow it to go on any longer. I am deeply sorry to be leaving and am looking forward to resolving these personal matters privately," he said.