Music mogul Russell Simmons accused of rape by three women

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Nine more women have come forward with allegations that music mogul Russell Simmons raped or sexually harassed them in reports published Wednesday by the New York Times and Los Angeles Times. Simmons released a statement last night saying he "vehemently denies all these allegations", adding that they shocked him to his core.

The allegations reported by the Times today stem from the 1980s and 1990s and mark the latest in a cascade of serious allegations of sexual misconduct against powerful men in entertainment, media, politics and elsewhere. Dixon, who was 24 at the time, tried to stave off the harassment until later that year, when she said Simmons raped her in his Manhattan apartment.

A former music journalist named Toni Sallie alleges that after going on a few dates with Simmons and deciding the relationship had run its course, he invited her to his home under the false pretense that he was throwing a party.

Since November, at least 11 women altogether, including screenwriter Jenny Lumet, actress Natashia Williams-Blach and fashion publicist Kelly Cutrone, have accused Simmons of sexual misconduct. #NotMe Again, this is not a movement against or even in conjunction with #Metoo.

Simmons founded Def Jam Recordings with mega-producer Rick Rubin in 1984. "I will prove without any doubt that I am innocent of all rape charges", Simmons said in an Instagram post capped off with a "#NotMe" hashtag. When Sallie arrived she says no one was there, and Simmons lead her to his bedroom where he forced her onto a bed and raped her.

Simmons announced on November 30 that he was stepping down from his business roles after two women accused him of assault, which he also denied. When L.A. Reid joined the label in 2000, she said he began sexualizing her as well and would turn cold when she denied his advances. I have separated myself from my businesses and charities in order to not become a distraction.

Through his Instagram account, Simmons added, "My intention is not to diminish the #MeToo movement in anyway, but instead hold the accusers accountable". "I want to restate categorically what I have said previously: I have never been violent or abusive to any women in any way at any time in my entire life". "I will relentlessly fight against any untruthful character assassination that paints me as a man of violence". The former label head-turned-wellness impresario denied those claims as well and responded to them - as he did numerous new accounts - saying he remembered the events differently.

Also on Thursday, the New York Police Department confirmed that it is investigating the rape claims and are reaching out to the alleged victims. Although he has stepped down from his companies, including RUSH Communications, he strenuously denies any non-consensual sex.

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