It only got worse for Clash. On Nov. 27, a 28-year-old Florida man sued Clash for having sex with him in 2000, when he was 16. Like Singleton, “D.O.” said he met Clash on a gay chat line called Power Chat. According to the lawsuit, Clash claimed he was a 30-year-old man named Craig, and after two days of phone conversations, invited D.O. to visit him in his apartment.
At the time, D.O. was staying with friends in New Jersey while working on a modeling gig in Manhattan, according to his lawyer, Jeff Herman, who is also representing Singleton. When D.O. arrived at the apartment, the suit says, Clash offered him alcohol and the two engaged in sexual contact, “including oral sex and digital penetration of [D.O.’s] anus.” D.O. was a virgin at the time, according to the lawsuit.
“Both Cecil and [D.O.] allege that Mr. Clash courted them when, in fact, what he was doing was grooming them,” Herman said. “He was getting to the point where they felt compliant when, in fact, there’s no such thing with a minor. Interestingly, in 2009, [D.O.] started writing a memoir about his life and relationships, and he wrote about what happened to him with Kevin Clash in detail.”
In pages of the unpublished manuscript, which Herman distributed to the media, D.O. refers to Clash as “The Tickler” and writes that Clash initially told him he was a successful businessman, but that he later learned he was in the entertainment business. D.O. describes their relationship as a game between “father and son.”
“On our first night, I did not lose my virginity; however, I learned what it felt like to have a man kiss you and take your breath away,” according to the manuscript. “I could tell by the slight smile on his face that he wanted to be my first. ‘We will take things slow, just let me taste you,’ he requested.”
Even after the teen went back to his home state, Clash continued to call “incessantly,” trying to arrange meetings for sexual encounters, the complaint states. They kept in contact, and after D.O. graduated from high school he moved to New York City, where the complaint states he and Clash resumed their relationship and began having sexual intercourse. He was 18 at the time, the complaint says, and he soon discovered who Clash was.
“They were together for about a year, and then after that year, periodically from time to time,” Herman said. “The reason he’s remaining anonymous is that he’s moved on with his life and has a job and he does not want to be re-victimized. But he stands behind these other victims.”
‘On our first night, I did not lose my virginity; however, I learned what it felt like to have a man kiss you and take your breath away.’
Although the statute of limitations for the federal claims is six years—which has elapsed for both Singleton and D.O.—Herman said the manuscript will help him argue in court that the period for making claims began this year because neither man realized he had been victimized until he learned about the other man, “and realized they were manipulated and it was an ongoing practice.” Neither of the two men ever reached out to Sesame Workshop about their relationships with Clash.
“We did not know about subsequent accusations until they stepped forward two weeks ago,” Sesame Workshop said in a Nov. 27 statement. “We trust the judicial process to reach the ultimate conclusions about the truth or falsity of these allegations.”
Sheldon Stevens was the first man to accuse Elmo puppeteer Kevin Clash. He tells Maria Elena Fernandez how the relationship began.
Cecil Singleton didn’t know how famous Kevin Clash was when they met, he says, over a gay phone-chat line. Here he tells Maria Elena Fernandez about the details of the relationship.
The third accuser of Elmo puppeteer Kevin Clash has remained anonymous, but that hasn’t stopped him from telling his side of the story in court documents.