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Voice of Elmo

Denies Sex w/ Underage Boy

Takes Leave of Absence from Sesame Street

11/12/2012 10:00 AM PST BY TMZ STAFF
EXCLUSIVE

Elmo Voice Actor Kevin ClashKevin Clash -- the man known as the voice of Elmo -- has taken a leave of absence from Sesame Street in the wake of allegations he had a sexual relationship with a 16-year-old boy, TMZ has learned ... allegations Clash adamantly denies.

We've learned ... Sesame Workshop lawyers recently met with a 23-year-old man who claims he and Clash began a sexual relationship 7 years ago ... when he was 16 and Clash was 45.

Clash has acknowledged to TMZ he had a relationship with the young man -- but insists it only took place AFTER the accuser was an adult.

Sesame Workshop honchos tell TMZ ... "In June of this year, Sesame Workshop received a communication from a young man who alleged that he had a relationship with Kevin Clash beginning when he was 16-years-old. This was a personal relationship, unrelated to the workplace. We took the allegation very seriously and took immediate action."

Sesame Workshop officials acknowledge to TMZ they met with the accuser twice and had a number of other communications with him.

Sources with direct knowledge of the situation tell TMZ ... after the accuser's initial meeting with Sesame Street, the accuser felt Sesame Workshop's lawyers were trying to muzzle him ... so he lawyered up with Andreozzi and Associates -- the firm that represented one of the victims in the Jerry Sandusky child rape case.

On August 15, 2012 ... Andreozzi fired off a letter to Sesame, accusing the company of trying to "discredit the victim in order to protect its employee and the image of one of its most valuable characters," adding, "This approach places a greater value on a puppet than the well being of a young man."

Sesame Workshop officials tell TMZ ... they conducted a thorough investigation and determined the allegation of underage sex was unsubstantiated. They say they never tried to silence the accuser -- rather they asked for evidence supporting his claim, but he never produced it.

Officials also tell us they're suspicious because the accuser has an email which TMZ obtained -- purportedly sent to him by Clash, acknowledging they had the affair when he was 16. The officials say the accuser never mentioned such an email existed and they believe it's fraudulent.

But there were other emails between Clash and the accuser, and although they don't suggest there was underage sex, officials tell us they disciplined him for inappropriate use of company email.

Sesame Workshop honchos tell TMZ ... "Kevin insists that these allegations are false and defamatory and he has taken actions to protect his reputation. We have granted him a leave of absence to do so."

It is unclear why Clash wanted a leave of absence, since he denies the allegations of underage sex.

As for Clash, the voice actor tells TMZ, "I had a relationship with [the accuser]. It was between two consenting adults and I am deeply saddened that he is trying to make it into something it was not."  Clash calls the accusations false and defamatory.

Finally Sesame Workshop officials tell TMZ the puppet is alive and well: "Elmo is bigger than any one person and will continue to be an integral part of Sesame Street to engage, educate and inspire children around the world."

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328 COMMENTS

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1.

cherry    

I wonder if he slips into the Elmo voice while he's having sex with under age boys.

673 days ago
2.

Soiled Midget Panties    

I guess Elmo was serious with his whole "I love you, you love me..."

673 days ago
3.

lynn    

Elmo's World is evidently not the place to be.

673 days ago
4.

high    

Should of voted for ROMNEY...

673 days ago
5.

Canadasux    

WOW! The charges will start flying now! Maybe Mitt Romney was right!

673 days ago
6.

TMZ_Admin    

I hear the Power Bottom Rangers have an opening they need filled.

673 days ago
7.

jackmama311    

ooooh, tickle me.......here.

673 days ago
8.

Diamond Goddess!    

Gay azz drama!!!
It's a Queen on a rampage!!!
(Seriously, allegations like THIS are what disempower the "gay agenda", BTW.)

673 days ago
9.

Diamond Goddess!    

So THIS is why this dude was so comfortable with his hand up Elmo's azz all these years!
LOL!!!

673 days ago
10.

diane    

Lol liberals at their best.

672 days ago
11.

MW    

Now does everyone get why Romney wanted to kill Big Bird (sesame street). They all a bunch of pervs.

672 days ago
12.

D'Artagnan    

Don't be hate'in, it's not there fault, they don't have a choice! Their just born that way!

672 days ago
13.

Jackie    

I'll hold my judgement until we get all the facts out. Keep in mind pretty much anyone can claim anyone is a pedophile now a days ...true or not and ruin someones life.

672 days ago
14.

zzyzx    

I have the absolute worst gaydar ever! I didn't even know Harvey was gay until last year, now I learn that Elmo is gay too!!!

672 days ago
15.

BB not bb    

I never liked the Elmo charcter anyway. It seemed to immature. Now it turns out the voice is of an older gay man who is into younger gay men. Regardelss of whether the affair started at the age of 16 or 18, it is still not very wholesome sounding.


They probably have alot of strange people working on Sesame Street. I don't know that puppeteers are very mainstream people to begin with.


If it isn't Romney attacking Sesame Street, it is someone who had an affair with Elmo's alter ego.

672 days ago
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