Third Elmo accuser says ex-puppeteer gave him alcohol, 'groomed' him
A third man has accused Kevin Clash, Elmo's former puppeteer, of an underage sexual relationship.
The man, identified only as "John Doe," filed a lawsuit in Manhattan seeking $75,000 in damages, alleging that Clash engaged in sex acts with him when John was 16 years old. Clash was 40 at the time.
The accuser said the two met on a gay chat line, and Clash allegedly said he was named Craig, and was 30 years old.
"Kevin Clash gave John alcohol and groomed him," the suit says, adding that John saw Elmo dolls and photos of the red character with celebrities in Clash's apartment. The accuser has also reportedly been working on a book about the relationship since 2009.
Clash said he "believes the lawsuit has no merit."
Clash, now 52, resigned Nov. 20 from "Sesame Street" after nearly 30 years, saying the allegations were becoming a distraction for the show.
Two other men have made similar accusations against Clash, both of which he has denied.