“Our detectives are currently in the process of reviewing the information,” Sergeant Brendan Ryan of the New York City Police Department explained after the Washington Post reported that Russell Simmons will be placed under investigation following multiple rape and sexual assault allegations.
The news of the investigation surfaced Thursday (Dec. 5), just one day after both the New York Times and the Los Angeles Times released stories where nine different women claim to be victims of sexual assault at the hands of Simmons, accusations that range from exposing himself to rape.
These claims first surfaced in late November when screenwriter, Jenny Lumet, published a column in the Hollywood Reporter detailing how she was “sexually violated” by the mogul. Since then, a total of 11 women have come out as one of Simmons’ victims, many stating that they chose to stay silent as a result of his power as a businessman.
Yet, both Simmons and his legal team, have consistently denied the accusations.
In a statement to CNN, Simmons’ attorney, Brad Rose, ensured his client will fully participate in the investigation against him as he’s sure of a positive outcome.
“Russell Simmons fully supports and will cooperate with the police inquiry,” Rose committed. “And is confident of a swift resolution.”
Simmons, himself, corroborated this confidence with an Instagram post where he “vehemently” denies all the recent accusations that have been hurled at him. He even went as far as to twist the #MeToo campaign, which promotes survivors of sexual assault to share their experiences and became so impactful that it spawned this year’s “Time Magazine Person of the Year: The Silence Breakers,” into a statement of innocence with #NotMe.
Despite retaining his innocence, the swirl of drama surrounding the allegations has led to Simmons removing himself from his various companies in hopes to not be a “distraction,” a potentially obsolete gesture. Because, even though there is no announced plan for his “Not Me” hashtag, if it gains traction in combination with the NYPD’s investigation, CEO or not, Simmons will provide plenty to talk about.