HBO and J.C. Penney part ways with Russell Simmons

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Russell Simmons (Matt Sayles / Invision / Associated Press)
Russell Simmons (Matt Sayles / Invision / Associated Press)

The fallout continues for music mogul Russell Simmons in the wake of multiple women accusing the Def Jam Recordings co-founder of sexual misconduct.

HBO released a statement Thursday afternoon severing ties with Simmons in light of the recent allegations.

Simmons’ show with the network, however, will go on.

“HBO will be airing ‘All Def Comedy’ as planned.  However, Russell Simmons will not appear in the new series and we will be removing his name from the show moving forward,” the TV service’s statement read.

“The series is a platform for promising and upcoming comedians and we do not want to deprive them of an opportunity to showcase their talents to a national audience. We have no other projects with Russell Simmons.”

HBO was not alone in distancing itself from Simmons on Thursday.

A representative for department store chain J.C. Penney told The Times that it had “decided to discontinue selling Argyleculture merchandise.” Argyleculture is Simmons’ menswear collection launched in 2012.

J.C. Penney has already removed the products for purchase on its website.

Simmons stepped down from his businesses Thursday morning, after screenwriter Jenny Lumet accused him of sexual misconduct in 1991.

Previously Simmons had been accused of sexual assault by former model Keri Claussen Khalighi, who told The Times that Simmons made aggressive sexual advances and that she “fought it wildly.”

In a statement to The Times, Simmons disputed Khalighi’s claims, insisting that what transpired between them was consensual.

In s statement Thursday responding to Lumet, he asserted that though he remembered that night differently, he remained abashed.

“While I have never been violent, I have been thoughtless and insensitive in some of my relationships over many decades and I sincerely and humbly apologize,” his statement read.

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