About a week ago, the news broke that Kevin Clash, the voice actor and puppeteer of Elmo from Sesame Street, was taking a leave of absence from the show after he was accused of having sex with an underage boy in the past. However, a few days later, the accuser recanted his statements and it looked like Clash would be returning to the show eventually. Well now TMZ is reporting that Clash has resigned from the show permanently after more underage sex allegations have surfaced.
The site is reporting that Cecil Singleton, 24, is suing Clash for allegedly having sex with him when he was just 15 years old in 2003. According to Singleton, the two met on a gay phone chat line, and he is now demanding $5 million from Clash. Singleton is claiming that, "[Clash] trolled gay telephone chat line rooms to meet and have sex with underage boys."
These new allegations became too much for Clash, who resigned shortly after the news became public. The Sesame Workshop has released a statement saying, "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."
We’re not sure what the future holds for Elmo, but it’s likely that the folks behind Sesame Street will find a new voice and puppeteer to bring the venerable character to life. Hopefully the production can put this ugliness in the rear-view mirror and just focus on bringing quality children’s programming to television.