A man has come forward with a new allegation that Elmo puppeteer Kevin Clash had a sexual encounter with him when he was 15 years old.
A $5 million lawsuit was filed Tuesday on behalf of 24-year-old Cecil Singleton, who alleges in his complaint that he and Clash met nine years ago through a gay telephone chat line. The complaint claims that Clash "frequented this chat room with the intent of persuading, inducing, coercing or enticing underage boys to meet him for sexual encounters."
The lawsuit alleges that the two engaged in "sexual activity on numerous occasions over a period of years." It claims further that at the time, Clash "was an unmarried adult male living a prominent public life centered around the entertainment of toddlers, while at the same time he, in secret, was preying on teenage boys to satisfy his depraved sexual interests."
The lawsuit seeks damages due to the alleged sexual activity between Singleton and Clash, now 52, which the complaint alleges resulted in Singleton suffering "severe injuries, including but not limited to mental, psychological and emotional trauma."
The new lawsuit comes on the same day that Clash announced his resignation as the voice of Sesame Street's character Elmo in the aftermath of the first underage accusations made by another 24-year-old accuser. Clash denied that accuser's allegation and the man recanted his claims of an inappropriate relationship last week and asserted that the relationship was in fact consensual.
Clash said Tuesday in a statement: "I am resigning from Sesame Workshop with a very heavy heart. I have loved every day of my 28 years working for this exceptional organization. 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."