In the recent months, many actresses have been revealing the sexual assault they endured at the hands of movie director Harvey Weinstein. This led to more actresses and models speaking up about other men in Hollywood violating them during their careers. Russell Simmons is now facing sexually assault allegations along with his buddy movie and music video director Brett Ratner. Model Keri Claussen Khalighi has alleged that when she a 17-year-old up-and-coming model in 1991, Simmons sexually assaulted her while Ratner did nothing to stop it.
Khalighi told the Los Angeles Times that Ratner, who was Simmons’ protege, took her to Simmons’ apartment after having dinner to allegedly show her a music video he had been working on. Khalighi claims that once she got to Simmons’ apartment he began yanking her clothes off and trying to force her to have sexual intercourse with him. She said that she “fought it wildly” but he still didn’t ease up. Khalighi then claims that Simmons forced her to perform oral sex on him.
During this disturbing encounter, she claimed that Ratner sat there and watched and did not answer or intervene as she cried for help.
“I looked over at Brett and said ‘help me’ and I’ll never forget the look on his face,” she remembered. “In that moment, the realization fell on me that they were in it together.”
After being assaulted, Khalighi went to take a shower and Simmons allegedly tried to violate her again. She told the Times that he walked up behind her and inserted himself into her without her consent. She said after jerking away from him, he left her alone.
Khalighi said both men have since apologized for their sexual misconduct. Simmons apologized a year ago while Ratner apologized 15 years ago.
The hip-hop mogul released a statement saying that everything that happened that weekend was consensual and that he’s “deeply saddened and truly shocked” by these allegations.
“Everything that occurred between us 26 years ago was completely consensual and with Keri’s full participation,” he claims. “I completely and unequivocally deny the horrendous allegations of non-consensual sex against me with every fiber of my being.”
Simmons and Ratner are also accused of sexually assaulting two more women, one in 1994 and another in 2001.
Ratner has been accused of sexual assault by six women this year, which caused him to remove himself from producing the Wonder Woman sequel.