Chill out: Russell Simmons is spotted for the first time since stepping down over sexual assault claims as he dons a back brace for a cryotherapy session
- Russell Simmons was out in West?Hollywood on Monday, the first time he has been seen since?stepping down?from all his businesses?
- The 60-year-old mogul was seen leaving Cryo Healthcare while wearing a large back brace
- Keri Claussen Khalighi claimed in a Los Angeles Times story last month that she was forced to perform a sex act on Simmons in 1991 and he then raped her
- Writer and director Jenny Lumet came forward with a similar claim soon after
Russell Simmons took some time to cool off on Monday as he headed out for some cryotherapy in Los Angeles.?
The disgraced music mogul was photographed exiting Cryo Healthcare in West Hollywood while wearing a large back brace.
This outing marked the first time that Simmons has been seen since he was accused of sexual assault by director Jenny Lumet - the daughter of Hollywood legend Sidney Lumet.?
'The voices of the voiceless, those who have been hurt or shamed, deserve and need to be heard,' Simmons said in a statement last week
'As the corridors of power inevitably make way for a new generation, I don't want to be a distraction so I am removing myself from the businesses that I founded.'
HBO announced soon after that Simmons was being removed from their All Def Comedy series.
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Summon Simmons:?Russell Simmons was out in West Hollywood on Monday, the first time he has been seen since stepping down from all his businesses (above)
Keeping chill:?The 60-year-old mogul was seen leaving Cryo Healthcare while wearing a large back brace (above)
Prior to Lumet coming forward, 43-year-old Keri Claussen Khalighi ?claimed in a Los Angeles Times story last month that she was forced to perform oral sex on Russell Simmons at her apartment in 1991 as Brett Ratner looked on, and then raped by the hip-hop impresario while she was showering after that first offense.
Simmons responded soon after by stating the sex was consensual and sharing three affidavits from individuals he claims were also in the apartment that weekend.
All three said there was no evidence of sexual assault, a conclusion they came too based on the demeanor of Khalighi that weekend.
None of those men - two of whom were anonymous and the third being Simmons' former assistant - witnessed the actual sexual acts in question between Simmons and the then-17-year-old model.
'Russell and I have actually had a face-to-face confrontation around this, we’ve had phone conversations, where we have had a conversation about what happened, where there was no dispute of what we were talking about,' said Khalighi to Megyn Kelly during an appearance on Today soon after she made the allegations.
'We were both talking about what happened on that night and he actually apologized. And part of what is so confusing and retraumatizing is what he is speaking about privately with me, is completely different than what has come out publicly. '
She went on to say that the 'lies and the denial' were 'really, really upsetting, disappointing and quite honestly, just repugnant.'
Khalighi had been out with the men and then gone back to see a music video at Simmons' apartment she told Megyn, the same story she had previously told the LA Times.
'As the video was playing, Russell came over and started making advances and at the time, I thought it was a joke and it became increasingly apparent that it wasn’t a joke and he continued his advances and I looked over at Brett at that point for help, and I will never forget the look on his face,' said the model, who now married and expecting her third child on Monday.
'It was in that moment I realized, I think this was their plan all along, there was no help that was going to come.'
Khalighi said she was 'closed' and 'frozen' as Simmons made his move, adding: 'I looked over at Brett and asked to help because I thought we were friends. It was a very confusing and terrifying moment.'
That initial assault was not the end of it though according to the model mom.
'Part of my story that I think is really important to talk about in this conversation that is happening right now nationally, with sex abuse coming out, after the oral sex part of the story, I stayed,' she explained to Megyn, appearing via satellite.
'I didn’t run out. I stayed and I took a shower and an additional sexual assault happened there.'
Victim:?Keri Claussen Khalighi claimed in a Los Angeles Times story last month that she was forced to perform a sex act on Simmons in 1991 and he then raped her
Simmons responded to the allegations in a lengthy letter published by The Hollywood Reporter a few hours after Khalighi's appearance on Today.
'In our meeting many years later, and subsequent conversations, Keri never accused me of what she has said publicly,' wrote Simmons.
'She insisted I was not violent. She did tell me her boyfriend and many others found out about our long weekend together and she said she was ashamed by that discovery.'
He then added: 'I am sorry for the embarrassment she recounted to me.'
Simmons also introduced the affidavits by stating they were proof that the 'experiences that weekend with Keri Claussen Khalighi 26 years ago were consensual.'
It is unknown how these were obtained though and none give the specific dates of the encounter while, as previously mentioned, the names of two do the individuals who submitted these are unknown.
Ratner meanwhile has denied all of Kalighi's claims through his attorney.
Kalighi did get some social media support from Olivia Munn, who previously accused Ratner of sexual misconduct, as she wrote: 'Eloquent, powerful and 9 months pregnant. Keri Claussen Khaligi epitomizes what it means to be a woman. I’m amazed by her courage and bravery to speak out against Russell Simmons and Brett Ratner. I proudly stand behind you Keri and I am so thankful for your strength.'?
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