December 15, 2017
Photo by Mireya Acierto/FilmMagic
Russell Simmons is the latest celebrity accused of sexual assault (this week PBS suspended Tavis Smiley and ESPN did the same in the wake of allegations against six of their current and former employees, including Donovan McNabb and Marshall Faulk).
The 60-year-old philanthropist and entrepreneur has been accused of of sexual misconduct, including rape from multiple women.
The claims have since garnered the attention of the NYPD, who announced this week they were launching a full investigation into the music mogul. Simmons has since created the hashtag #NotMe to defend himself against the allegations he claims are false.
Simmons’ attorneys, Michael Sterling and E. Carlos Tanner spoke to TMZ about their client’s decision to take a polygraph test to further clear his name.
So who are the women speaking out? Actress and comedian Amanda Seales detailed her experience with Simmons in a series of videos on Instagram. Watch below.
Fashion publicist Kelly Cutrone is the latest woman to come forward about an encounter with Simmons in 1991. Other accusers include former and aspiring models Keri Claussen Khalighi and Tanya Reid and a former Def Jam employee, Drew Dixon.
Simmons has since stepped down from his companies, including Def Jam. HBO has also removed his name from their All Def Comedy series. In a statement to Deadline the networks says, “Russell Simmons will not appear in the new series and we will be removing his name from the show moving forward. The series is a platform for promising and upcoming comedians and we do not want to deprive them of an opportunity to showcase their talents to a national audience. We have no other projects with Russell Simmons.”