A new sexual assault allegation against Russell Simmons has surfaced. Aspiring filmmaker Jennifer Jarosik is suing the music mogul for $5 million, claiming he attacked and raped her in 2016.
In a 10-page filing Wednesday in U.S. District Court in Central California (read it here), Jarosik said she met Simmons in New York City in 2006. They shared similar interests in meditation, yoga and a vegan diet. She trusted him and his “reputation as a spiritual conscious person.” Simmons had promised to help her make a film.
In 2016, Jarosik was invited to Simmons’ house in Los Angeles. She claimed that he asked her to have sex and she said no, but Simmions allegedly got aggressive, pushed her onto his bed and “pounced on her while she was still in shock and fear, and proceeded to rape her.”
She did not disclose the assault and rape except to a few close friends. It wasn’t until others started coming forward with accusations against Simmons that she spoke out. According to the filing — which is peppered with #TimesUp throughout — Jarosik contacted him about the assault and he acted as if it never happened.
The documents also state that Simmons “has historically thrived on the sexual exploitation of young women trying to break into the entertainment and music industry, in which young female artists are falsely promised opportunities and advancement by experienced and well-established men in power in the industry, with their careers in jeopardy if they resist the sexual overtures of these powerful men.”
The lawsuit comes at a time where the #MeToo campaign and the Time’s Up movement are potent and gaining momentum. It also comes after an already dark cloud of sexual misconduct allegations hovers over Simmons. Twelve women have come forward with accusations, three of whom detailed their stories with the music mogul on Megyn Kelly Today.
Simmons has denied the allegations on social media, but the New York Police Department has revealed publicly that it is “reviewing information” on the matter. However, Big Apple law enforcement sources revealed to Deadline at the end of last year that a formal investigation into the hip-hop mogul’s actions is almost a near certainty at this point.
Subscribe to Deadline Breaking News Alerts and keep your inbox happy.