After Kevin Clash’s accuser was reportedly paid off to keep quiet about underage s*x allegations, it seemed that the Elmo scandal was over and done with. Now, however, a second accuser has come to the forefront, and the scandal is back on the front page.
Kevin Clash’s initial accuser, wannabe model Sheldon Stephens, initially retracted his allegations, but then he retracted his retraction, telling the good folks at Sesame Street that they could have their $125,000 settlement back if they allowed him to tell his story.
Making matters worse for Clash, a second accuser has come forward to claim that he too had a s*xual relationship with the Elmo voice actor while he was still a minor.
The second man, whose name has not been released, is suing Clash, claiming the two met in 1993 on a gay phone chat line. The accuser, now in his 30s, says he was only 15 when he and Clash met. Clash was 17 years his senior.
Court documents obtained by TMZ report that Clash “groomed [him] to gain his trust by, among other things, taking him to nice dinners and giving him money.”
The accuser continues, saying Clash “trolled gay telephone chat line rooms to meet and have sex with underage boys.”
When asked why he didn’t come forward sooner, the accuser said he only recently became aware of how much he was psychologically damaged by his relationship with Clash.
The second accuser is seeking $5 million dollars in court.
Clash has resigned from Sesame Street. Sesame Street Workshop has released the following statement, which reads in part:
Sesame Workshop’s mission is to harness the educational power of media to help all children the world over reach their highest potential. Kevin Clash has helped us achieve that mission for 28 years, and 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 want, and he has concluded that he can no longer be effective in his job and has resigned from Sesame Street. This is a sad day for Sesame Street.