NBC News: Elmo actor Kevin Clash has resigned from ‘Sesame Street’ after new charges

20 11 2012

There are so many things I could say about this, but I’ll keep it simple. This is sad.

I’ve never been a fan of the Elmo character, but there’s no denying that he’s one of the most important and popular children’s characters of the past 20 years. The entire Sesame Street empire, and the show’s current format, is based around him. Will they replace Kevin Clash, and have a new puppeteer take over? Will Elmo fade away? It’s hard to say at this point, but Sesame Workshop has hinted that Elmo will live on.

If the allegations are true, and the evidence is mounting that they are, I hope Clash gets what he deserves. Regardless, it’s sad. And it should serve as a sad reminder that anyone who interacts with young people needs to live their lives and conduct themselves beyond reproach.

– dEV

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Elmo actor Kevin Clash has resigned from ‘Sesame Street’ after new charges

By Gael Fashingbauer Cooper, TODAY
Kevin Clash, the voice actor and puppeteer who made furry red Muppet Elmo famous, has resigned from “Sesame Street,” Sesame Workshop said in a statement. The announcement came Tuesday, the same day that a second man alleged Clash had a sexual relationship with him when he was underage.

“Sesame Workshop’s mission is to harness the educational power of media to help all children the world over reach their highest potential,” the statement read. “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.'”

In the new lawsuit, filed Tuesday in New York, Cecil Singleton says he met Clash, then 32, in a gay chat room in 1993, when Singleton was 15, and they began a relationship.

Another man made similar charges earlier this month, and later recanted, saying he was of age when the relationship began. On Nov. 12, Clash, 52, took a leave of absence from the show following allegations of the first relationship.

That first man, now 24 and a college student, reached out to Sesame Workshop in June and said he was just 16 when he had a relationship with Clash. The company said in a statement that it investigated the relationship and found the charges that the man was underage to be “unsubstantiated,” but that Clash was disciplined for using poor judgment and violating company Internet usage policy.

On Nov. 13, a Pennsylvania law firm representing the first man issued a statement saying their client had recanted his claim that the relationship began when he was underage, calling it an “adult consensual relationship” and saying the man would have no further comment.

(Full Story with Video)





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