Fact-check: Russell Simmons claims he doesn't have bodyguards. Really?; Update: Simmons gets defensive, fans sling mud at Michelle Malkin

In response to criticism that he has armed bodyguards while crusading for a crackdown on guns, rap mogul Russell Simmons tweeted tonight that he doesn’t have “body guards.” He’s been on quite the anti-gun tear:

So is it really true that Simmons doesn’t have bodyguards? Years of past media coverage of Simmons out and about indicate otherwise.

Here’s Simmons on MTV Cribs a few years back introducing the audience to the “head of security” — a “Brother Muhammad” — at one of his lavish estates:


There’s a second bodyguard at the door as well.

Watch the video:

Check out the photo and report here from last October, when Simmons and rapper Kanye West ventured into an Occupy camp in NYC (emphasis added):

Eyewitnesses described West and Simmons sitting down and talking with protesters around 2:00 pm, with their bodyguards in tow. Ben Fallah, a protester at the Occupy Wall Street site, tells Billboard, “Largely I felt the response was pretty mixed. Some felt [West and Simmons] were being opportunistic as a means to vault their own celebrity. Though in the case of Kanye West, I don’t really think that’s necessary.” (Billboard)

And this is from a February 2011 visit by Simmons to Seattle:

The Seattle Public Library’s Microsoft Lecture Hall had a different feel to it on February 24th.  The large amphitheater style room was packed with an unusually raucous and excited crowd.  People were joking, laughing, telling stories and sharing secrets all because of the speaker that was sequestered in a back room surrounded by beefy bodyguards, Russell Simmons.

And here’s another first-person account of Simmons’s bodyguard from author and speaker Ressurrection Graves from February 2011:

While people were standing in line for Russell Simmons, I realized that they were fans. It sounds really silly to point out now. Some people may have been there to try to get record deals, however his big, dark-skinned, straight-forward bodyguard made it abundantly clear that people should not try to get record deals. He said, “We know you all have great ideas.” It was hilarious!

Here’s a photo of his bodyguard standing close by for the book-signing with author and speaker Ressurection Graves in the foreground:


And here’s an account from Allure magazine:

Aroma Journey, $130
1901 Collins Ave., Miami Beach

We didn’t run into Leo or P. Diddy in the Shore Club Hotel’s Cubist lobby. In the spa, however, we did meet Russell Simmons’s bodyguard as he was perusing a menu of treatments. “[Russell] told me to come to the spa and just chill,” he explained as he debated between a body polish and the Aromatherapy Body Treatment.

And here’s a 2008 article from The Economist magazine:

Mr Simmons is not your typical financier, which may be why his business is growing even as the mainstream banking system melts down. Best known as the “godfather of hip-hop”, he made his first fortune as co-founder of Def Jam records, guiding the careers of artists such as Run DMC, the Beastie Boys, Public Enemy and Jay-Z. The company was sold to Universal Music for $100m. He made a second fortune in fashion, ultimately selling his Phat Farm “urban apparel” business (mantra: “Classic American Flava”) for $140m in 2004. His sprawling Rush conglomerate, headquartered on the 43rd floor of a Manhattan skyscraper and guarded by a huge but seemingly amiable bodyguard, also features jewellery (big diamonds a speciality), running shoes and energy drinks.

And here’s YouTube video of Simmons’s bodyguards working an event in Texas in 2009:

We’re not the only ones calling bull on Simmons’s claim:


The ugly truth is evidently a little too ugly for Simmons:

Gee, condescending much? Malkin knew he was just getting defensive:

Too bad he doesn’t have a bodyguard to help mask his insecurity.

Simmons’ fans rallied to his defense but failed to disprove Twitchy’s fact check:

Others saw right through Simmons:

When in doubt, fling mud. Works every time.


* * *

He’s still going on about it:

  • http://twitter.com/Freebird_73 ♪ Misty ♪

    Dumb Liberals!!! So sick of them.

    • Elena0412

      Worse than dumb: they’re hypocrites. They don’t give a rat’s ass about children or they wouldn’t be so gung ho on abortion. They have far fewer children than conservatives do and generally see them as pests. However, this is their golden opportunity to do away with guns. They have a slight majority of brown, black, homosexual, welfare recipient, criminal voter base and don’t care if only the government has guns because it is THEIR government. They need to strike while the iron is hot.

      • Christopher Hayes

        it’s their government ‘today’ but whose will it be ‘tomorrow’?

      • Christopher Hayes

        this is why the patriot act was such a bad idea

      • Maxwell

        If they really cared about others and children, they would be looking at mental health programs (since every murderer in most of these shootings had some mental health problem), not restricting rights. You’re right, this is just their big chance to do away with guns, and they don’t want to pass it up.

      • SOF Warrior

        Amen, Elena0411! They only care about what they want, unborn children be
        damned. Well, they’ll be in for a surprise if they ever decide to go knocking on
        doors trying to confiscate guns from the rightful arms of
        American citizens, no pun intended. It’s really too bad we had an opportunity to remove this current administration from office along with many of the left leaning congress, but all of the freeloaders and illegals made it to the voting booth, heck they had 118% turnout in Ohio, 142% in Pennsylvania and they also had the luxury of having those wonderful automated voting machines that guaranteed a vote for Romney was a vote for Obama. I still do not understand why this victory was not contested? There was plenty of evidence of voter fraud to simply lie down and rollover and throw us to the progressives.

    • Christopher Hayes

      I think more and more people are getting fed up with liberal non-sense. This last election was only proof that there are a lot of dumb people in our society with voting rights. The adults are really losing patience with these idiots

  • EOD

    I would not wish to live in a World, or even a Nation, were I constantly depended on others to defend my Safety.

    … as a matter of fact, America was Founded to be the antithesis of such a place, a place where Citizens were dependent on a Master for their own Security.

    • conservativechick

      If we ban all guns, none of these people, including the President would need armed guards, right? Those intent on doing harm…. WILL. Don’t expect any of these rich and famous to ever give up their own armed guards. Only we the people will be left vulnerable to gun crimes, like those 77 young dead progressives in Norway.

    • Christopher Hayes

      not only depend on defense but food, and phone and house and healthcare and … well, you get the picture

    • conservativechick

      HAHAHAHAHA I just saw this about Michael Moore’s ARMED BODY GUARD got arrested! HAHAHAHAHA “unlicensed weapon! HAHHA http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,144921,00.html

  • Zefal

    Polifact: Did Russell Simmons lie when he said he doesn’t have bodyguards?

    He said he doesn’t have bodyguards. He didn’t say he doesn’t lie about not having bodyguards.

    Polifact Verdict: Mostly didn’t lie.

    There you go. Can’t argue with Polifact logic.

    • ressurrection

      I don’t know why I was put in this blog without permission but the person standing behind us was not acting as a bodyguard but more of an usher. How can you have 300 people in one place, and not have anyone taking care of the line? This makes no sense, and this picture is stolen. It needs to be removed NOW!

      • George Washington Mclintock

        What you described is a common duty of personal-protection specialists. Even if you are right, those large men with earpiece and dark suits in the video and third picture, they are not ushers.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002109532283 Jillane Kent

        Whoa! All caps! You must be super serious. Tell me, do our President’s have ushers as well?

  • http://twitter.com/die_mich_zwei Spatial Awareness


  • http://twitter.com/TheAngieNC2 Angie (D)

    He doesn’t have “body guards” he has “security” — to progs this is a very important distinction.

    • http://www.vatican.va/ Rulz

      Yeah, like everything else, it means they should have it while the rest of make sacrifices for the greater good.

  • Jim Denney

    Simmons “people” may well be unarmed … If that woman at the book-signing inflates those pants she & Simmons can achieve escape velocity immediately.

    • ressurrection

      I am the woman and my husband loves my backside thank you.

      • Dusquene Whistler

        No he doesn’t. He’s just afraid you’ll sit on him if he’s honest about it.

        • Grandma HeadInjury

          Not to play “hall monitor” here, but let’s not become “them”….

          • Nutstuyu

            Seriously? Get a grip.

          • Grandma HeadInjury

            Got one, Nuts. I am just sayin’ what needs to be said.

  • MaryUKtheScot

    The usual liberal celeb hypocricy!! THEY can protect theirselves and family but “UP YOU’Rs”!!!!

    • Christopher Hayes

      so true, with liberals the rules only apply to YOU the little guy. They’ll drive SUV’s and fly around luxury air while you ride the public bus and train for the sake of the ‘people’

  • CombatDiver

    More ” do as I say, not as I do ” from these leftist clowns. If they didn’t have hypocrisy and knee jerk reactions on their side, they wouldn’t have anything.

  • $2743723

    This brings back memories of Ted Kennedy, who had bigtime bodyguards with those miniguns under their trenchcoats. His bodyguards even got stopped on capitol hill once and it caused quite a stink that quickly disappeared.


    A racist brother who lies. Big surprise.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Marcy-Cook/1001619613 Marcy Cook

    Not only does he have bodyguards but his kids have bodyguards…heck even his ex-wife has a bodyguard…but that one is to protect her from Russell.

  • TocksNedlog

    Like when Rosie O’Donnell chastised Tom Selleck for his pro gun-ownership stance, then it turned out that she had an ARMED bodyguard.

    • MaryUKtheScot

      Yeah, because she wanted HER kids protected, to hell with Average Joes kids!!!

  • TocksNedlog

    Why would ANY public figure that is worth over $300 million NOT have a bodyguard?
    Look for Simmons to backtrack by claiming that his bodyguard isn’t ARMED, which still makes him a liar for claiming that he doesn’t have a bodyguard at all, but whatever . . .

  • ressurrection

    Hi, you do not have permission to use my picture in this blog. And this person was not acting as a bodyguard so your facts are incorrect. Please remove my picture IMMEDIATELY!

  • http://potbateman.tumblr.com/ Pat Bateman

    Rich black people need bodyguards. What a revelation. In the wake of a primary school massacre, Twitchy is WINNING with these sorts of articles!

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002109532283 Jillane Kent

      Who cares if they have bodyguards? Did you miss the point while reading the post? You understand that the point was exposing a level of hypocrisy, no?

  • Richard J Sunkle

    If progressives didn’t lie, the world would be a much quieter place.

  • moonsbreath

    So, according to Russell’s logic, rap music doesn’t glorify gang violence and their use of guns either.

  • http://www.righthook38.com righthook38

    These celebrities are hypocrites. How many rappers does Simmons support, who constantly talk about their guns, and shooting people, mainly cops? I care nothing for what Russell Simmons has to say.

  • $7610427

    Russell Simmons got rich from RAP music…Namaste, indeed…

    • snap

      It help him get rich but most of his money came from his other buisniesses and by the way not all rap music is bad hell the group run dmc was a clean group who never cursed.

      • $7610427

        Current rap music is a looooong way from Run DMC! I know because I have a teen son…I have to listen to it in order to educate myself on what he is listening to and what I don’t want him listen to. And the worst of it isn’t what is played over the radio…

  • Guest

    I wanted so much to tweet that hypocritical so-and-so but after my rush to attack the attackers last week, (you remember @thegame?) my account was suspended, AGAIN! Seems they can dish it out but if you respond to their attacks and death threats, twitter will suspend you. And guess who’s still tweeting? You guessed it, those that were doling out the threats of violence. I’m still in the gulag and this time, I don’t care if they let me back or not.
    Hey Simmons, piss up a rope you lying, hypocrite.

  • peteee363

    hey simmons, couldn’t a steak knife in the hands of a nut case be considered a assult weapon?

  • http://twitter.com/MoueLaMoue Moue La Moue (D)

    Guess those guys are just really good friends who liked to be really close to him? I mean, bodily close? So that they are sort of, guarding him. You know. Just friends though. Sure. I’ll buy that.

  • TWG2A

    These liars are so bold and brainwashed they don’t even know what “truth” means anymore. They lie and lie and don’t even care if they get caught. And when we catch them and expose them, it’s like taking holy water into Draculas lair. They ignore the facts and deflect by accusing the one telling the truth of some vile behavior of being a “racist” The word “racism” doesn’t mean shit today, other than “I hate you for catching me in a lie.” I’ve gotten to the point that whenever those evil beasts call me a “racist”, I just call them a pedophile and laugh. Ask them “How did your family react when they learned you raped those three little children behind the library last summer?”

  • Danny Wheeler

    A wounded tiger, that Russ!

  • Ralph_Gizzip

    Remember when Russell Simmons was relevant?

    Yeah, me neither.

  • BeeKaaay

    He’s a bloodthirsty leftwingwacko, apparently pro-criminal and pro-thug and anti-innocent-people-defending-themselves.