Kevin Clash, the voice of Elmo on Sesame Street, resigned Tuesday amid allegations he had sex with an underage boy.
Clash, 52, had been the show's Elmo puppeteer and voice for 28 years, according to CNN.
The underage sex allegations were made public Nov 12., but then later recanted by a 24-year-old man who has chosen to remain anonymous, The New York Times reported.
Sesame Street had made plans for Clash to return to work.
But this week, TMZ claimed a second man had accused Clash of initiating a relationship 20 years ago, when the man was 15, and has now sued him for $5 million.
"Unfortunately, the controversy surrounding Kevin's personal life has become a distraction that none of us wants, and he has concluded that he can no longer be effective in his job and has resigned from Sesame Street," Sesame Workshop said in a statement. "This is a sad day for Sesame Street."
According to USA Today, production of the preschool series will continue, and Elmo will be played by understudies trained by Clash.