AceShowbiz - Vince McMahon has retired amid allegations of sexual misconduct stretching back decades. While a claim he raped a female referee in his limousine resurfaced, the WWE CEO had already stepped down from his role at the body pending an investigation into accusations he paid women hush money after having affairs with them.
On Friday, July 22, the 77-year-old announced that he was quitting the industry he built. In a statement released through his attorney, he said, "As I approach 77 years old, I feel it's time for me to retire as Chairman and CEO of WWE. Throughout the years, it's been a privilege to help WWE bring you joy, inspire you, thrill you, surprise you, and always entertain you."
"I would like to thank my family for mightily contributing to our success, and I would also like to thank all of our past and present Superstars and employees for their dedication and passion for our brand," he added. "Most importantly, I would like to thank our fans for allowing us into your homes every week and being your choice of entertainment."
"I hold the deepest appreciation and admiration for our generations of fans all over the world who have liked, currently like, and sometimes even love our form of Sports Entertainment," the retired wrestler concluded his statement.
No mention was made to the allegations that have dogged McMahon and it is unclear how his stepping down impacts the investigation into his alleged misconduct.
McMahon, who is married to former Donald Trump aide Linda McMahon, was the unchallenged king of WWE until June 2022 when he faced claims he paid a female employee millions of dollars in hush money after having an affair with her.
The woman with whom he is alleged to have had an affair was a paralegal and he allegedly doubled the woman's salary from $100,000 to $200,000 when their apparent romance began. It is said when their relationship turned sour he kept her quiet with a $3 million payout.
In 1992, WWE's first female referee, Rita Chatterton, came forward to accuse McMahon of raping her in his limo in 1986. Her allegation was recently supported by former wrestler Leonard Inzitari, who said he saw Chatterton after the alleged attack.