Things just got uber-real on Sesame Street.
Kevin Clash, who has been at the center of a bitter underage sex scandal, has resigned from his post as the voice of Elmo on Sesame Street.
Sesame Workshop confirmed the news in a statement today, saying:
“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.”
Last week, Sheldon Stephens accused Clash of having a sexual relationship with him while Stephens was still a minor. Clash admitted to having a relationship with Stephens, now 23, but claimed it began after Stephens had reached the age of consent. Stephens later withdrew the accusation in light of a settlement, but a short time later, he switched his stance and insisted his original allegations were true.
On Tuesday, a second suit was filed against Clash, according to attorney Cecil Singleton.
This is a sad day for Sesame Street, indeed.