Gary Goddard on leave after Anthony Edwards' molestation accusations

LOS ANGELES -- Hollywood designer Gary Goddard is taking leave from his company amid accusations of sexual misconduct.

Goddard Group chief operating officer Barry Kemper announced in a press release late Monday night that Goddard would take "a leave of absence" from the company. Kemper says Goddard's absence will "allow the company and its employees to continue their projects undistracted by recent allegations made against him." He says the move is "in the best interest of the company, its employees and clients."

Goddard has denied accusations from actor Anthony Edwards and another actor, who say Goddard molested them when they were children.

Goddard has designed several theme park attractions based on Hollywood films. He has worked as a Broadway producer and directed 1987's "Masters Of The Universe," a live action film based on the He-Man cartoon.

In a detailed essay published to Medium, Edwards, now 55, recalls meeting Goddard when he was just 12 years old. He also says his best friend was raped by Goddard.

"Pedophiles prey on the weak. My father, who suffered from undiagnosed PTSD from WWII, was not emotionally available. Everyone has the need to bond, and I was no exception. My vulnerability was exploited. I was molested by Goddard, my best friend was raped by him  --  and this went on for years. The group of us, the gang, stayed quiet," Edwards wrote.

In Edwards' letter, the former "ER" actor wrote: "I did not go from being a victim to a survivor alone. No one does. I had to ask for help, and I am so grateful that I did."