Russell Simmons is making headlines again for sexual misconduct. Now, he’s being accused of raping a woman in his Los Angeles residence in 2016, reports TIME. The music mogul has been accused of sexual assault by five other women.
The lawsuit was filed on Wednesday (Jan. 24), and the plaintiff, Jennifer Jarosik, is seeking a hefty $5 million in damages. The 37-year-old claimed that she went to Simmons' home in August of 2016 for a meeting regarding a documentary he was allegedly helping her produce.
Jarosik said Simmons tried to have sex with her during the meeting and then raped her when she refused; throwing her on the bed and pushing her down to the floor.
Like his other previous cases which stemmed from the 1980s-90s, and were featured in a story in December in the New York Times; the Def Jam founder has profusely denied these latest allegations. “I look forward to having my day in court — where, unlike the court of public opinion, I will have the ability to make use of fair processes that ensure that justice will be done and that the full truth will be known,” Simmons said in a statement.
“These horrific accusations have shocked me to my core and all of my relations have been consensual,” he continued. “I will not litigate this matter in the media."
In November, Simmons published a statement in The Hollywood Reporter, in response to the allegations that have been surrounding his behavior toward women.
“That has been an ongoing deep transition in my life. As a yogi I believe intent is very important. My intent always came from a joyful, playful place. I can sleep at night because I know who I am. And I know who I was. I never committed any acts of aggression or violence in my life,” he wrote. “I would never knowingly cause fear or harm to anyone. For any women from my past who I may have offended, I sincerely apologize. I am still evolving.”
Still, Jarosik felt compelled to share her story after seeing the other women stand up and tell their own. After Harvey Weinstein’s massive scandal, dozens of women have spoken out on the pervasive misogyny, sexism, and assault that occurs in entertainment, journalism, and politics. It’s worth noting that very few of these men have been in the music industry, but others feel these cases need to be unearthed.
“The music industry and the hip-hop industry have a history of misogyny and the exploitation of women,” Jarosik’s lawyer Perry Wander told The Associated Press. “It’s time that they faced the music.”
Further details for this story are still pending.