Well, turns out our collective sigh of relief was short-lived. Though puppeteer Kevin Clash's first accuser recanted his claims one week ago, Clash officially resigned from Sesame Street today. Though it's not mentioned in Clash's official resignation, his departure coincides with new allegations from a second accuser, who claims Clash began a sexual relationship with him when the accuser was just 15.
Here's Sesame Workshop's statement:
Sesame Workshop's mission is to harness the educational power of media to help all children the world over reach their highest potential. 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.
And here's some background on the second accuser, courtesy of the always elegant folks at TMZ:
The accuser — who is now in his 30s — has filed a lawsuit against Clash ... claiming the two met on a gay phone chat line back in 1993 ... when the accuser was 15 years old and Clash was 32.
In the suit, the accuser reveals his name — Cecil Singleton. His attorney also provided TMZ with a photo.
...In the suit, Singleton claims ... although the sex occurred nearly 20 years ago, he didn't take action until now because ... he "did not become aware that he had suffered adverse psychological and emotional effects from Kevin Clash's sexual acts and conduct until 2012."
Singleton is demanding more than $5 million.
Blerghs all around. Blergh blergh blergh.