Another woman has accused hip-hop mogul Russell Simmons of rape.
Alexia Norton Jones told Variety that Simmons raped her in 1990 in New York City after the two went on a date. Jones, who was an aspiring actress and model at the time, met him in the mid-1980s when she worked as an executive assistant at Inter City Broadcasting Corp. The two became friends a few years later when they found themselves in the same social circle.
She said it wasn’t until November of 1990 that they decided to go on a date. When the evening ended, she said, he invited her to his apartment. She told Variety that when they arrived at his apartment, he attacked her.
“It was such a fast attack. It was literally an attack,” Jones wrote in a personal account published on Variety. ”I remember being pushed up against a wall. He pulled my dress up. I must have said no seven to 10 times, and then I acquiesced. It was very fast. I would say it happened in less than 10 minutes.”
Last year she filed a report with the New York Police Department, but her case fell outside New York’s statute of limitations for felonies. She told Variety she filed the report to stand in solidarity with the other women who have accused Simmons of rape and assault.
“I had willingly gone there. I went there and I would have been intimate with him. Why did he have to take from me what wasn’t his?” Jones wrote.
Simmons responded to her accusation in a statement sent to HuffPost.
“I’m deeply saddened by this story from Alexia,” he said. “At no time did she share these feelings about her first sexual encounter with me, which took place roughly 28 years ago. I have taken multiple lie detector tests that affirm I never sexually assaulted anyone. Alexia and I dated, were intimate and attended multiple events together after she alleges the incident occurred in 1990. I considered her a friend for all these years and continue to have a warm relationship with members of her family. I believe we last spoke in 2006 when she called to express her disappointment over the fact that I had not attended an event honoring her father.”
Her father is Clarence Jones, who was a friend of and writer for Martin Luther King Jr. The book publisher W.W. Norton was her grandfather.
Over a dozen women have accused Simmons of sexual assault, including rape and attempted rape.
Reports from The New York Times and Los Angeles Times published in December featured nine women who allege that Simmons raped, sexually assaulted or harassed them from 1983 to 2016. In November a former model accused him of sexually assaulting her when she was a minor. Screenwriter Jenny Lumet accused him of raping her, and TV personality Kelly Cutrone says he attempted to rape her in 1991.
Most recently, author and activist Sil Lai Abrams accused him of raping her in 1994 after a night out in New York City.
In her essay, Jones pointed out how race definitely plays a factor in sexual assault and believing survivors. Other survivors, including Abrams, have made similar points.
“The other important part to this story is race,” Jones wrote. “Russell is a black man. We black women in the community didn’t want him to fail. We wanted him to succeed. As a black woman, we are told we have less value in society already. And then you have someone who is supposed to be a leader, and what he did to me. I was a gem. And he turned me into dirt.”
Head to Variety to read Jones’ full story.
How to vote
Vote-by-mail ballot request deadline: Varies by state
For the Nov 3 election: States are making it easier for citizens to vote absentee by mail this year due to the coronavirus. Each state has its own rules for mail-in absentee voting. Visit your state election office website to find out if you can vote by mail.Get more information
In-person early voting dates: Varies by state
Sometimes circumstances make it hard or impossible for you to vote on Election Day. But your state may let you vote during a designated early voting period. You don't need an excuse to vote early. Visit your state election office website to find out whether they offer early voting.My Election Office
General Election: Nov 3, 2020
Polling hours on Election Day: Varies by state/localityMy Polling Place