It looks like Big Bird isn't the only character on Sesame Street making headlines this year.
Kevin Clash—the voice actor behind Sesame's fan-favorite, Elmo—has taken a leave of absence from Sesame Street to dispute claims that he had a sexual relationship with a 16-year-old boy.
As reported 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.
TMZReports new developments in the case:
We broke the story ... Clash was disciplined by Sesame for sending a personal email from his Sesame Street email account. The email was sent to a man who now claims he had a sexual relationship with Clash when he was 16 and Clash was 45.
In the email -- sent well after the accuser turned 18 -- Clash writes, "I'm sorry that I keep talking about sex with you, its driving me insane."
He adds, "I want you to know that I love you and I will never hurt you. I'm here to protect you and make sure your dreams come true."
Clash continued, "I'll have my assistant book a ticket for you to come to NY and we can talk about this in person."