The man known as the “voice of Elmo,” Kevin Clash, resigned from his position on Sesame Street and with Sesame Workshop late in 2012 after a spate of sex allegations came to light from several accusers.
Now one of the two young men, Sheldon Stephens, has filed a lawsuit against Clash after a series of retractions and re-retractions of his claims, saying now that he was telling the truth when alleging he and Clash had a sexual relationship while Stephens was still underage.
Miami-based attorney Jeff Herman is now representing all of the four men who are making similar claims of underage sex against Clash, with Stephens the first to publicly come forward to claim he and the “voice of Elmo” puppeteer had inappropriate relations while he was underage. (Stephens also claims that he and Clash smoked crystal meth and used poppers during the relationship.)
Herman says of the men suing Clash that all four claim“Kevin Clash was this father figure who offered to help them and groom them with attention and fairly quickly it turned into a sexual relationship.” All the young men reportedly allege that they were legally not of age to consent to the relationships they claim to have had with Clash, and further, that they did not comprehend the severity of such interactions.
No criminal complaints have been filed against Kevin Clash in the matter, but all four of the men, two of whom remain anonymous and are identified in court documents by initials only, are seeking compensation in the civil suits.
Michael G. Berger is Kevin Clash’s lawyer, and he says that Stephens publicly denied after his initial claims that the relationship occurred while the accuser was underage:
“Sheldon Stephens, the plaintiff, has already admitted in writing that he had ‘an adult consensual relationship’ with Mr. Clash. Mr. Clash continues to deny any wrongdoing, and we intend to defend this case forcefully.”
Clash denies all claims made by the accusers.