In the light of a second sexual allegation, business mogul and co-founder of the music label Def Jam, Russell Simmons announces that he's stepping down from his companies. Just a little over a week after the former model Keri Khalighi accused Simmons of sexual misconduct, a second allegation has come to the open.
Writer Jenny Lumet who is the screenwriter of the Rachel Getting Married' and 'The Mummy penned an open letter detailing her own sexual assault experience with Simmons. On the Nov. 30 issue of The Hollywood Reporter, Lumet painfully recalled the experience and put it in an open letter for Simmons.
According to Lumet, Simmons pursued her romantically off and on in the course of one year. She said he even sent her 250 balloons one time asking her to say yes to him. She said it was only light, fun, and they still continue to go out in huge groups. Until that one night when Simmons offered her a ride home however she was brought to his place instead. She said she kept on insisting for the driver to take her home but Simmons said "NO" and that's when it all happened.
"I have built a life in the past 25 years, and a reputation in my industry. I need no one to have this visualization of me. I will, like the others, lose work because of this," wrote Lumet.
In response to this second sexual allegation, Russell Simmons released a statement. According to Simmons, he had a different recollection of what happened and that he doesn’t want to be a distraction so he’s stepping down from his position in his companies.
"While her memory of that evening is very different from mine, it is now clear to me that her feelings of fear and intimidation are real. As for me, I will step aside and commit myself to continuing my personal growth, spiritual learning and above all to listening" - Russell Simmons
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