Def Jam co-founder Russell Simmons has mounted a strong defense amidst sexual misconduct allegations on “In Depth with Graham Bensinger,” admitting to making some indiscretions in the past but denying the violent accusations.
The 66-year-old music executive said he had to take nine lie detector tests to parry accusations made by 18 women. The music mogul admitted to being “crude” and in “compromising situations” in the past but maintained his innocence in the face of those serious allegations including rape.
Simmons noted that to give credibility to the tests, he made the Chairman of the Polygraph Association conduct seven of them, with each test addressing a distinct and serious accusation against him. He added that since 2017, he has taken nine lie detector tests. Providing details on the lie detector tests he took, he explained that he took one test per “violent” accusation or claim he believed could be compounded due to multiple accusers.
He clarified that tests were taken based on specific allegations, such as violence or apology, and explained the rationale behind testing for claims made by more than one accuser. The Def Jam co-founder disclosed that he had to take two separate lie detector tests on his culpability of the crimes he was being accused of. According to him, the results were 94% accurate, raising questions of skepticism.
Simmons shared an anecdote about questioning the validity of belief versus truth with the Chairman of the Polygraph Association, who suggested that the subconscious would reveal the truth during testing.
He claimed there was footage of his polygraph tests, but, mainstream media would not endeavor to air it due to a prevailing narrative prioritizing belief in women and a reluctance to revisit the past. The Def Jam Recordings co-founder accused the media of bias against presenting evidence that contradicts the prevailing narrative.
He noted however that the treatment given to women and celebrities differs from the male ones, but, stressed the need for balance between supporting women and avoiding unjust demonization without sufficient proof.
Raising thought-provoking questions, he argued that recollection of events may differ from person to person depending on the time the incident happened.
Eighteen women have accused Simmons of various misconduct, including workplace inappropriate behavior, attempted assault in a women’s restroom, and rape at his apartment since 2017. Following public allegations, Simmons stepped down from his Def Jam duties.
A 2020 documentary, “On the Record,” featured several women sharing their experiences and speaking out against the hip-hop mogul.