Nine More Women Accuse Music Mogul Russell Simmons Of Rape And Sexual Misconduct

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9 extra girls have come ahead with allegations that music mogul Russell Simmons raped or sexually harassed them in reviews revealed Wednesday by the New York Occasions and Los Angeles Occasions.

4 of the ladies spoke on the file with the New York Occasions, emboldened, they stated, by the ocean change in how victims’ tales have been handled within the wake of allegations towards disgraced Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein and different high-profile males in leisure and different industries. Three of the 4 girls who spoke to the Occasions stated Simmons raped them after exhibiting sexually violent and abusive habits.

Others stated they made the choice to return ahead after studying Simmons’ denials to earlier allegations, together with these made by mannequin Keri Claussen Khalighi, who informed the Los Angeles Occasions in November that Simmons assaulted her after he and movie director Brett Ratner took her again to the music mogul’s condo below the guise of exhibiting her a music video they have been engaged on. In a visitor column for the Hollywood Reporter final month, screenwriter Jenny Lumet additionally accused Simmons of raping her in 1991.

Taken collectively, the allegations span from the early 1980s, when Simmons was cementing his standing as an elder statesman of hip hop by way of Def Jam information, to only a few years in the past.

Following the allegations by Lumet and Khalighi, Simmons, now 60, introduced that he was stepping down from his enterprise empire, together with his yoga enterprise Tantric, in order to not function a distraction.

However on Wednesday after the reviews by the LA Occasions and New York Occasions have been revealed, Simmons issued a way more strongly worded assertion denying the accusations.

“I vehemently deny all these allegations. These horrific accusations have shocked me to my core and all of my relations have been consensual,” he stated. “I’ve monumental respect for the ladies’s motion worldwide and their battle for respect, dignity, equality and energy.”

Allegations of rape

Drew Dixon informed the New York Occasions she was working as an govt at Def Jam Recordings in 1995 when Simmons began to behave sexually abusive. Dixon, who was 24 on the time, tried to stave off the harassment till later that yr, when she stated Simmons raped her in his Manhattan condo.

She give up her place at Def Jam quickly after.

“I used to be damaged,” she informed the New York Occasions.

Toni Sallie was a 28-year-old music journalist for the commerce journal Black Radio Unique when she met Simmons whereas on task in 1987. After a couple of dates, their relationship did not work out, she stated, however they remained in contact and one night time the next yr, Simmons invited her to a celebration at his condo.

When she arrived, nevertheless, she found they have been alone. She informed the Occasions that whereas giving her a tour of the condo, Simmons threw her on a mattress and raped her.

Tina Baker, a singer on the time, was additionally allegedly attacked after agreeing to return to the music mogul’s condo within the early 1990s. As soon as inside, she informed the Occasions, Simmons pinned her down and raped her.

“I did nothing,” she stated. “I shut my eyes and waited for it to finish.”

Sherri Hines, a member of hip-hop group Mercedes Women who glided by the stage identify Sheri Sher when she encountered Simmons in 1983, informed the LA Occasions that the music mogul raped her in his workplace after working into her at nightclub when she was simply 17 or 18 years previous.

After sitting down on a sofa, she stated, he pinned her down and raped her regardless of her makes an attempt to battle him off.

“I left crying,” she informed the paper.

Allegations of sexual harassment and different misconduct

Different girls who spoke out relayed tales of alleged misconduct by Simmons, starting from an assault inside a nightclub toilet, to utilizing his place at Tantric yoga studios to stress instructors and members into sexually inappropriate conditions.

The ladies additionally spoke about having to take care of sexually vulgar and suggestive language, or be on fixed look ahead to the following aggressive transfer.

In a single alleged case, Erin Beattie, a therapeutic massage therapist, was 24 when she was booked for an in-room therapeutic massage on the Alexis Resort in 2005 with Simmons. She informed the LA Occasions that midway by means of the session, Simmons eliminated his sheet and uncovered his penis.

“He was like, ‘Do you wish to work this out?’” she recalled him saying. Beattie informed the paper that she stayed within the room solely after Simmons agreed to no sexual contact.

Concern of reprisal

In every of the instances reported Wednesday, the ladies on the time confided the alleged assaults to individuals of their interior circle, together with mates and a therapist, who then corroborated what that they had been informed to each information organizations.

Again and again, the ladies stated that they had waited so a few years to return ahead out of concern of retaliation, notably given Simmons’ place atop an unlimited empire of manufacturing, vogue, and life-style enterprise ventures.

“I didn’t wish to minimize off my one conduit to having any hope of a profession,” Dixon, the previous Def Jam music exec, informed the New York Occasions.

Hines even based mostly an encounter in her novel, Mercedes Women, on the alleged rape, however was too scared to establish Simmons by identify, as an alternative referring to him as a robust businessman named “Ron.”

BuzzFeed Information reached out to a number of girls named in each reviews, together with Beattie, Sallie, and Dixon, in addition to to the native authorities the place the alleged assaults occurred.

Simmons’ response

The music mogul has denied the entire allegations of misconduct towards him up to now. In some instances, he has acknowledged some type of relationship with the ladies, however insisted that at no time did he interact in nonconsensual sexual conduct.

Right here is his full assertion launched on Wednesday:

I vehemently deny all these allegations. These horrific accusations have shocked me to my core and all of my relations have been consensual.

I’m blessed to have shared extraordinary relationships, whether or not by means of work or love, with many nice girls; and I’ve monumental respect for the ladies’s motion worldwide and their battle for respect, dignity, equality and energy. I’m devastated by any motive I could have given to anybody to say or consider me within the methods which can be at the moment being described. In latest weeks, some former enterprise, artistic and romantic companions have aired grievances as claims I categorically reject. In a few of these cases, monetary motives and direct contradictory witness testimony has been provided to the media, which has been fully overlooked of tales. In the previous couple of days, one girl tried to extort me for $500,000 solely to recant her ridiculous declare. The present allegations despatched to me by the New York Occasions and Los Angeles Occasions vary from the patently unfaithful to the frivolous and hurtful. The presumption of harmless till confirmed responsible should not get replaced by “Responsible by Accusation.”

I’ve already apologized for the cases of thoughtlessness in my consensual relations. I’ve separated myself from my companies and charities with a view to not turn into a distraction. I’ve re-dedicated myself to non secular studying, therapeutic and dealing on behalf of the communities to which I’ve devoted my life. I’ve accepted that I can and will get filth on my sleeves if it means witnessing the beginning of a brand new consciousness about girls. What I can’t settle for is accountability for what I’ve not finished. I’ve carried out my life with a message of peace and love. Though I’ve been candid about how I’ve lived in books and interviews detailing my flaws, I’ll relentlessly battle towards any untruthful character assassination that paints me as a person of violence.

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