Russell Simmons Wants To Bring His Hip-Hop Musical 'The Scenario' To A Stage Near You
Russell Simmons Wants To Bring His Hip-Hop Musical 'The Scenario' To A Stage Near You

Russell Simmons Writes Open Letter Denying Sexual Assault Allegations

Russell Simmons Wants To Bring His Hip-Hop Musical 'The Scenario' To A Stage Near You

Simmons continues to deny sexual assault allegations

Russell Simmons has written a new statement to the Hollywood Reporter, responding to allegations that he sexually assaulted model Keri Claussen Khalighi when she was 17.

In the article, Simmons continues to deny that he sexually assaulted Khalighi, claiming that their interactions, which occurred 26 years ago, were consensual.

READ:Russell Simmons Issues Statement After Being Accused Of Sexual Assault

In the article, Simmons acknowledges the times we're in, where women are coming forward with their stories of sexual assault and harassment. Simmons says that he is "encouraged about this time in our history." However, he says that he did not sexually assault Khalighi, and provides statements from three witnesses backing up his story. Those statements came from Anthony McNair and two people who are anonymous.

In the statement, Simmons detailed the relationship he had with Khalighi over the years:

"In our meeting many years later, and subsequent conversations, Keri never accused me of what she has said publicly. She insisted I was not violent. She did tell me her boyfriend and many others found out about our long weekend together and she said she was ashamed by that discovery. I am sorry for the embarrassment she recounted to me."

Simmons does acknowledge that he has made mistakes in the past, and regrets some of his playboy past:

"I have made choices that have offended some of the women in my life. It’s not cool to be a playboy and a new consciousness understands this. Now, as I hear these voices, I do as well. Though never abusive in any way, my remarks were often cavalier and thoughtless, and for this I am humbled. I am a work in progress. I am human. The fact that I come from the world of music or a specific place or generation justifies nothing."

Russell released this statement a couple of hours after Khalighi appeared on on Megyn Kelly TODAY. Khalighi stood by her story. When asked about Simmons claim that the sex was consensual, Khalighi shook her head and said "I don't even know what to say."

Khalighi also said she saw Simmons last year, and he gave a "really touching, remorseful apology." Simmons' lawyer, however, said the apology was given in “context for the embarrassment and upheaval the weekend caused her," not for sexual assault.

Source: Hollywood Reporter