Kevin Clash, Elmo Puppeteer/Actor, Takes More Time Off After Accuser Recants Story

1:29 PM, Nov 14, 2012   |    comments
"Sesame Street" muppet Elmo "Sesame Street" muppet Elmo and puppeteer Kevin Clash / AP Photo/Victoria Will, file
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NEW YORK (AP) - The producers of "Sesame Street" say the actor who works the Elmo puppet and does the character's voice won't be returning to work right away.

They say Kevin Clash has asked for "some additional time to put this ordeal behind him."

He'd taken a leave of absence amid an allegation that he'd had a sexual relationship with a 16-year-old boy. The accuser is now in his 20s. Clash is 52.

But yesterday, the accusation was withdrawn. The accuser released a statement saying that he and Clash had actually had a relationship as adults, and that it was consensual.

It's not known why he made the accusation.

Clash released a statement saying he's "relieved that this painful allegation has been put to rest."

He's been performing as Elmo on "Sesame Street" since 1984.

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