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Kevin Clash Says Goodbye to Elmo in Wake of Sex Abuse Allegation

Photo of Nigel M Smith By Nigel M Smith | Indiewire November 20, 2012 at 12:18PM

It's come to this. Little over a week following news that the subject of last year's Sundance award-winning documentary "Being Elmo," Kevin Clash -- known the world over as the man behind Elmo on "Sesame Street" -- took a surprise leave of absence from the show in the wake of allegations he had a sexual relationship with a 16-year-old boy (now a 23-year-old man who has since recanted his account), Clash has officially resigned from the show. READ MORE: INTERVIEW | It's Good to Be Elmo: Kevin Clash and Constance Marks Talk About "Being Elmo" In a statement released today, Sesame Workshop said: "Sesame Workshop’s mission is to harness the educational power of media to help all children the world over reach their highest potential. Kevin Clash has helped us achieve that mission for 28 years, and none of us, especially Kevin, want anything to divert our attention from our focus on serving as a leading educational organization. Unfortunately, the controversy surrounding Kevin’s personal life has become a distraction that none of us want, and he has concluded that he can no longer be effective in his job and has resigned from Sesame Street. This is a sad day for Sesame Street."
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Director Constance Marks with Kevin and Elmo. Photo courtesy of Submarine Deluxe.

It's come to this. Little over a week following news that the subject of last year's Sundance award-winning documentary "Being Elmo," Kevin Clash -- known the world over as the man behind Elmo on "Sesame Street" -- took a surprise leave of absence from the show in the wake of allegations he had a sexual relationship with a 16-year-old boy (now a 23-year-old man who has since recanted his account), Clash has officially resigned from the show.

READ MORE: INTERVIEW | It's Good to Be Elmo: Kevin Clash and Constance Marks Talk About "Being Elmo"

In a statement released today, Sesame Workshop said: "Sesame Workshop’s mission is to harness the educational power of media to help all children the world over reach their highest potential. Kevin Clash has helped us achieve that mission for 28 years, and none of us, especially Kevin, want anything to divert our attention from our focus on serving as a leading educational organization. Unfortunately, the controversy surrounding Kevin’s personal life has become a distraction that none of us want, and he has concluded that he can no longer be effective in his job and has resigned from Sesame Street. This is a sad day for Sesame Street."

Watch the trailer for "Being Elmo," the documentary about Clash, below:

This article is related to: Kevin Clash, BEING ELMO: A Puppeteer's Journey, Television, TV News, Sesame Street