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Clash Accuser Recants Allegations of Sexual Impropriety

A law firm issued a statement recanting accusations made about the man who performs the voice of Elmo on Sesame Street.

The 23-year-old man who accused puppeteer Kevin Clash, the voice of Elmo, of having sex with him when he was 16 has recanted that allegation.

New York Times reporter Brian Stelter is reporting via Twitter and newyorktimes.com that the man admitted the relationship was between consenting adults.

The recantation was issued in a statement from a law firm, according to Stelter.

Stelter also tweeted a statement from Clash: "I am relieved that this painful allegation has been put to rest. I will not discuss it further."

The accuser claimed that he and Clash, who was raised in the Turner Station community of Baltimore County, had a sexual relationship seven years ago when he was 16 and Clash was 45.

Though Sesame Workshop, the producer of Sesame Street, home of the iconic muppets of which Elmo is one, said it found the man's claims to be unsubstantiated, the organization granted Clash a leave of absence so he could work to clear his name.

TMZ broke the story about the allegations of Monday.

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Sam Battle November 14, 2012 at 01:16 AM
This so called accuser needs to be charged to the fullest and if found guilty of false statements needs to be put on the sex offenders list as a false accuser to protect the public from this person as anyone could be his next victim and he may not recant then and to think that Mr.Clash could have suffered for years being on the sex offenders list for nothing just sickens me and to think how many others may be on this list due to lies and sick people out to harm people for their own gain. So yea this false accuser needs to be put on the list to see how it would have felt for Mr Clash had he been burned for lies....................from a sick person looking for attention.
Bob Smith November 14, 2012 at 01:17 AM
Clash has done good with his life, what has the accuser done?
Christopher Kidwell November 14, 2012 at 09:15 AM
No, he doesn't need to be put on the sex offenders list. He does need to have this put into his police record that he has made false allegations in the past so the police know to be skeptical of any future allegations from him.
MG42 November 14, 2012 at 12:34 PM
Sad all the way around. Clash was a great role model who had his name tarnished. It will be interesting to see how Clash will be perceived now in the African American commununity, who generally are not fans of homosexuality.
SET November 14, 2012 at 01:01 PM
Many African Americans are not fans of homosexuals but that does not speak for the majority! I've know Mr. Clash was gay for many years, as has many Baltimorians! It changes nothing!! I am grateful the accuser recanted now the healing begins for Mr. Clash, his family and friends affected by this vicious lie!!
Marybeth Starkey November 14, 2012 at 01:08 PM
This accuser should face the fullest penalties allowed by law. Maybe Mr. Clash should sue him for defamation of character. My favorite saying is "you are responsible for your own actions". Hopefully Mr. Clash's name will not be tarnished in any way from this.
M. Sullivan November 14, 2012 at 02:18 PM
Why does this accuser get to remain anonymous after dragging Clash's name through the mud, especially after admitting he lied? Where is our intrepid investigative news media now?
SET November 14, 2012 at 02:24 PM
Exactly!! Let him reveal himself! The world loves Elmo! And although no one is perfect, I believe Mr. Clash would have never done anything to intentionally scar the character he created, which is loved by so many children around the globe! He didn't ask for this! It's was bought on buy a masked man that should reveal himself to the country!!! I won't fret about this because we all know investigators are on this!! We'll see him soon!!
HDGresident November 14, 2012 at 03:13 PM
The accuser should not remain anonymous, but Mr. Clash should have had better judgment. When you're in the entertainment industry (particularly with children), it's just poor judgment to be 45 years old and have a relationship with an 18 year old. Although legal, it's very questionable.
Ashby Charles November 14, 2012 at 03:50 PM
I am glad to know that "Truth' prevailed as it always does. Now damage control and healing begin from the destructive lies of one person. I feel no different about Mr. Clash I have always been a fan of his and the character he portrays. I will continue to pray for him and his family. I don't believe the African American community will change their perception of Mr. Clash. Since when have African American comunity not been a fan of homosexuals? That is not true at all....
Raven November 14, 2012 at 04:10 PM
Clash's life as he knew it is over. Once you are accused of such a hideous crime there is no going back. Unless one has ever been in that position it is never known the damage such a false accusation can do. I will keep him in my thoughts and prayers
Raven November 14, 2012 at 04:12 PM
You are blaming Clash for this? He was a victim to this false accusation. He did nothing wrong. Your sense of morality has nothing to do this injustice.
Al Day November 14, 2012 at 05:58 PM
It's obvious the perp threatened the victim and caused him to withdraw his accusation. He should also be charged with terroristic threats. This type intimidation should be punished.
Bob Allen November 14, 2012 at 05:59 PM
The worst thing about this affair is that there will be people who will believe the accusations. The question was asked by someone in the 1950's when falsely accused of communist leanings and later cleared, "Where do I go to get my reputation back?"
Al Day November 14, 2012 at 06:00 PM
And if there was emotional involvement that cause the victim to go back on his accusation that is even worse. I will never look at Elmo the same way!!
Al Day November 14, 2012 at 06:02 PM
This gives the phrase 'big bird' a whole new meaning.
AllStar November 15, 2012 at 05:02 AM
Why are people glorifying this man who had a homosexual relationship with a young man? We should still be appalled at his reprehensible actions.
Christopher Kidwell November 15, 2012 at 06:37 AM
Appalled at his reprehensible actions? The 'young man' was over the Maryland Age of Consent. Get real here and take your Puritanical values back to the 1600's where they and you belong.
William November 15, 2012 at 05:26 PM
I read this quote in an article yesterday "the accuser's attorney had been meeting with Clash's attorney as recent as an hour ago, discussing a financial settlement and 6-figures were on the table"...I had never heard of Clash before this but if the above is true it sure makes the recant suspicious to me....just saying...
Christopher Kidwell November 16, 2012 at 12:29 AM
That is a good question. Personally, I have been pushing for years now to have the anonymity in sexual assault cases stripped away so that people know who is making the allegations and people can come forward saying "That adult/child is full of it, I was with them and this man at this time, nothing happened!" We don't give this anonymity to murder victims, break-in victims, etc. Why have we given anonymity in this one case? Yes, supposedly the crimes are heinous to 'most' but the anonymity is still troubling for the reasons above.
Marge Neal (Editor) November 16, 2012 at 12:32 AM
Accuser identified by The Smoking Gun website: http://patch.com/A-z7BW
Christopher Kidwell November 16, 2012 at 12:33 AM
It's only obvious to you and the fact is that the police were probably monitoring Mr. Clash very intensely and would have known if that happened. Anytime someone recants sexual assault or child sexual abuse allegations, that is the first thing that comes out of the peanut gallery, that those people were 'threatened' in order to drop the allegations. They don't seem to be able to contemplate that yes, people and even children do make false allegations of sexual assault and child sexual abuse. Children are not as 'ignorant' of sexual things as they were in the 1700's today, if they were even ignorant of them back then. My own cousin knew what sex was at 6 and when I asked her where she learned the details from, she went in my aunt's bedroom and got out the book she used to teach her older daughter about sex and said that she had overheard numerous older children talking about it in school and elsewhere.
Momwithteens November 16, 2012 at 12:00 PM
The only thing this tells me is that the accuser was in it for the money.
Raven November 16, 2012 at 11:53 PM
How do you figure that?
Edward Wang November 20, 2012 at 11:52 PM
I'm not letting my kids watch Elmo anymore. It was disappointing to have to explain to my 4 year son that someone he admired was a homosexual predator.
Christopher Kidwell November 21, 2012 at 12:36 PM
Not proven as of yet. Now, there is a second accuser.... but appearing just after another accuser was found to be lying and recanted? His credibility isn't looking very good. Add in the numerous years between the accusations? Looks less credible still. As I told my children: If someone sexually assaults you or forces you into sex, IMMEDIATELY tell an adult so that we can get some physical evidence that you are telling the truth. Real world, people do lie about being sexually assaulted in order to get revenge on someone or, as in the case of the Duke accuser, to direct attention away from an ill that they committed.
Christopher Kidwell November 21, 2012 at 12:38 PM
Agreed, Momwithteens. If I had been sexually assaulted by someone, I would not want to touch their dirty money with a 2000 foot pole. When a person makes allegations like this and then, during or even after the criminal case, files a civil lawsuit? It makes their allegations look very non-credible.

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