Move comes weeks after New York judge dismissed underage sex claims from three other plaintiffs
Kevin Clash, the scandal-beset former puppeteer and voice of "Sesame Street" character Elmo, is seeking to have a fourth lawsuit accusing him of underage sex dismissed, after prevailing in three other similar lawsuits.
In a brief filed in U.S. District Court in Pennsylvania on Thursday, Clash argues that the lawsuit brought by accuser Sheldon Stephens, on the grounds that Sheldon's claim is barred by the statute of limitations.
Earlier this month, a New York judge barred three other complaints against Clash on the same grounds.
According to the motion to dismiss filed by Clash's attorney Thursday, Sheldon's complaint was filed five years past the expiration date for the claim.
The motion to dismiss also claims that Stephens made a statement contradicting his initial complaint.
"Remarkably, Mr. Stephens has now put forth in his sworn declaration (the "Declaration"), not subject to cross-examination, in which he says that the purpose of Statement was "to falsely imply that [he] did not have a sexual relationship with Kevin Clash when [Mr. Stephens], was a minor," the motion reads.
"To the extent that anything can be gleaned from his latest statement," the motion asserts, "it is that Mr. Stephens is prepared to say anything to obtain the relief he seeks."
Earlier this month, Jeff Herman — the attorney for Stephens as well as the other three accusers — told TheWrap that his clients plan to continue pursuing their case, despite the fact that a New York judge barred the charges.
""The statute of limitations is an arbitrary timeline that silences victims," Herman told TheWrap in a statement. "We believe that the victims in this case are within the statute of limitations, but this ruling highlights the need for a window in New York to allow victims to have their day in court."
Pamela Chelin contributed to this report.