Model Keri Claussen Khalighi has accused music producer and entrepreneur Russell Simmons of raping her when she was 17-years-old. Khalighi gave her story to the L.A. Times who published it Sunday morning. Since then, Russell Simmons has come forward and issued a statement. The problem with his statement; however, is that he says the sexual encounter between he and Khalighi was consensual. He would have been 34-years-old in 1991 and Khalighi states she was 17. Therefore, she was unable to legally give consent.
Russell Simmons has not denied the encounter, nor does he deny that sexual activity occurred. In his statement below, he says he remembers the weekend 26 years ago and remembers Keri giving consent. Russell Simmons stated the following.
“I know Keri Claussen Khalighi and remember the weekend in 1991 that she has referenced. Everything that happened between us 26 years ago was completely consensual and with Keri’s full participation. We spent time in my apartment over a period of two days and one night, as well as at some public places including Nell’s Nightclub.
Much of the time we were in the presence of other acquaintances. I’m deeply saddened and truly shocked to learn of Keri’s assertations as to what happened over the course of that weekend.”
You may read Russell Simmons’ full statement below.
Statement of Russell Simmons in Response to LA Times Article. pic.twitter.com/iwT7Wy3SoY
— Russell Simmons (@UncleRUSH) November 19, 2017
Granted, laws change and a legal expert will need to assess what the statutory laws were in 1991 between a 17-year-old teen girl and a 34-year-old man. As the laws stand today, Keri Claussen Khalighi legally could not consent to sex with a 34-year-old man.
Terry Crews shared a response to the allegations. You may see that below along with the full L.A Times story.
Ptedators protect one another.
— TheQueerWhoStrikesFearIntheHeartofAmerica (@FiendofRedJenny) November 19, 2017
It might go as far as to say that Brett Ratner would have been an accessory to a crime since allegedly, he was in the room when she states she cried out for help only to have her pleas be ignored.
Unfortunately, due to the statute of limitations, it’s doubtful criminal charges would be pursued in this case.
There is currently a petition underway in honor of actor Corey Feldman to have statutory laws extended or overturned in child sexual abuse cases.
— Tracey Laing (@Tracemaree) November 19, 2017
What do you think about Russell Simmons statement? Do you agree that sexual activity between a 17-year-old and 34-year-old is consensual?