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A former producer and executive who worked with Russell Simmons has sued the mogul, alleging that he sexually assaulted her in the 1990s.

According to reports, Hip-Hop pioneer and Def Jam Recordings founder Russell Simmons was hit with a lawsuit Tuesday (Feb. 13) in Manhattan, New York. The lawsuit, filed by a woman referred to as “Jane Doe,” claims that Simmons raped her in the late 1990s in his apartment. The woman describes herself as a former senior music executive and music video producer who worked for Def Jam during that time.

In the filing, Ms. Doe claimed that Simmons had invited her to his place to view a rough cut of a music video. Soon after she arrived, his demeanor went from business to being sexual, which she brushed off as a joke. He then pulled a “wrestling move” and pinned her down before allegedly raping her. She detailed how she tried to fight him off, but was unable to. She would further detail how Simmons sexually harassed her afterward at the office, invading her personal space. The lawsuit says she resigned from Def Jam in 1997.

Her lawyers, Kenya Davis and Sigrid McCawley, stated that their client was moving up in her career before the sexual assault. “She was proud of her contributions to the burgeoning musical genre of hip hop, but her hard work and her career in music was disrupted and derailed by Mr. Simmons, a rich and powerful celebrity whose wealth and influence allowed his abusive behavior to go unchallenged for decades,” they said in a statement. “Now a successful writer and producer in the entertainment industry, Jane Doe’s traumatic experiences with Simmons echo those of so many other women who he has preyed upon for decades.”

The lawsuit was filed under the New York’s Adult Survivors Act and the New York City Gender Motivated Violence Act. Both laws contain “lookback windows,” which allow for the filing of lawsuits that wouldn’t occur due to being outside of the statute of limitations. Russell Simmons faced other lawsuits accusing him of sexual assault in 2018 and was the subject of the On The Record documentary in 2020 where other accusers detailed their allegations against him. Simmons has stated in the past that he had been in “compromising situations,” but claimed in an interview that he took and passed nine lie detector tests concerning those allegations. 

Russell Simmons Sued Over Alleged Sexual Assault Of Music Exec  was originally published on