A family feud between Russell Simmons, his ex-wife Kimora Lee Simmons and youngest daughter Aoki Lee took place on Monday (June 19), post-Father’s Day. The rift began when Simmons’ 23-year-old daughter, Ming Lee, posted an Instagram Story of herself and Kimora walking a Baby Phat runway when she was a child with the caption “Happy Father’s Day.”
Simmons, 65, retaliated with an outright image in his own Instagram Story with a banner that read “Stop telling fathers they should have fought harder to see their children and start asking mothers why he had to fight at all.”
The following day, Aoki Lee, 20, responded with a series of heated exchanges between herself and the Def Jam Recordings co-founder, accusing him of verbal and mental abuse towards her, her sister and their mother, who Simmons divorced in 2009.
“My father is not well, for years, he needs help and won’t accept that he refuses to acknowledge he is not himself,” Aoki Lee captioned on her Instagram story with an emotional video where she explained Simmons’ alleged harassment towards her family and boyfriend. The recent Harvard University graduate also detailed Simmons’ threats towards her, where he allegedly told Aoki Lee that she’d “never get a fashion job again” if he exposed their exchanges.
Supporting her daughter, Kimora also shared clips and messages on her respective Instagram story, tearfully pleading for Simmons to stop harassing her family. “I’m just asking that you please leave us alone. I’ve tried to go to lawyers and get help. I’ve tried to show all the crazy texts,” she said.
The former model and fashion mogul also said that while she’s had Simmons blocked for years, he still posts on social media like the two are friendly, including posts of flowers to make it appear like they were sent from Kimora.
“I met this person when I was in high school in St. Louis, Missouri,” Kimora said. “I was modeling. I was 16 years old. I’ve known you a long time and I’ve seen lots of stuff and I just choose to not go there. I’m typically the one that he and others would call to have their back.”
Since 2014, Kimora has been married to investment banker and ex-Goldman Sachs managing director Tim Leissner, to whom she’s now estranged from. The two share biological son Wolfe and adopted son Gary, while Kimora also shares 14-year-old son Kenzo with actor Djimon Hounsou.
Kimora and Aoki Lee’s exposure of Simmons isn’t the first time that the 65-year-old has been accused of abuse and harassment. In 2017, Simmons relocated to Bali after allegations of sexual abuse. 2020 HBO documentary On the Record, centers Simmons’ alleged sexual assault and abuse of over 20 women, including former music executive Drew Dixon.
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