Russell Simmons deactivated his Twitter account amidst a new wave of rape allegations.
The hip hop mogul is facing some strong accusations from four new women who claimed they experience sexual misconducts from him including rape during the years 1988 to 2014. Simmons has denied the accusations but has stepped down from his positions at his companies including Def Jam. At least three of his accusers says he raped them, which is a very serious charge, the New York Times reported.
The serious accusations came from singer Tina Baker, who was signed to Def Jam, music journalist Toni Sallie, and Drew Dixon, who is a former executive for Def Jam. Drew Dixon told the NY Times that she was working closely with Russell Simmons in the 1990s when he raped her at his Manhattan apartment in 1995. She also said that he regularly sexually harassed her on the job including showing her his erect penis and trying to kiss her unwantedly.
“I didn’t want to cut off my one conduit to having any hope of a career,” Dixon said. “I thought if I could survive long enough to have a hit — a real bona fide hit with my name on it — I would move categories.” She later left the company after reaching a point where she said she couldn’t handle the harassment anymore.
Singer Tina Baker says that Russell Simmons used to be her manager and after working with him in the early 90s her career blossomed. She detailed an incident where they ran into each other at a club and he invited her back to his place to discuss her career. She said that she never think anything of it and went. On her arrival, he gave her drink and then forced himself onto her which resulted in an altercation. “I did nothing, I shut my eyes and waited for it to end,” she said.
Russell Simmons has since deactivated his Twitter account and issued a statement on Instagram. “Today, I begin to properly defend myself,” he wrote. “I will prove without any doubt that I am innocent of all rape charges. Today, I will focus on “The Original Sin” (Keri Claussen), the claim that created this insane pile on of my #MeToo. Stay tuned! We’ll share information today… And tomorrow the case of Jenny Lumet. My intention is not to diminish the #MeToo movement in anyway, but instead hold my accusers accountable. #NotMe Again, this is not a movement against or even in conjunction with #Metoo . It’s just a statement about my innocence.”