On Friday, R&B star R. Kelly was charged with 10 separate counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse by a grand jury that convened last week. The Chicago Sun Times reported that an arrest warrant was issued and that his first court case will be scheduled for March 8, according to records.
Buzzfeed reported on Friday: “The charges come after a series of public allegations made against the R&B singer since the Lifetime docuseries, Surviving R. Kelly, aired earlier this year, and after a new tape allegedly showing Kelly sexually assaulting an underage girl was sent to prosecutors in Chicago by Michael Avenatti, the attorney who gained who rose to national prominence while representing porn actor Stormy Daniels.”
CNN added that the network had seen the video footage:
The newly unearthed footage, which lasts 42 minutes and 45 seconds, is clear and explicit. There are two scenes on the video: one apparently in a living room and another in a bedroom. A naked man who appears to be R. Kelly is seen performing multiple sex acts with the girl. She is heard calling him "daddy" multiple times. It is impossible to know her age just from the video. They both refer to her "14-year-old p***y." Six times the girl refers to her genitalia as 14 years old. At one point, the man asks the girl to urinate. After she does, he urinates on her.
The Daily Wire reported last April:
R&B star R. Kelly was supposed to perform on May 5 at the University of Illinois at Chicago, but after 1,300 students and staff at the University of Illinois at Chicago signed a petition to the university to cancel his performance, citing Kelly’s alleged history of sexual misconduct, the concert was cancelled. The concert would have been Kelly’s first performance in his hometown since BuzzFeed News alleged he had trapped women in his Chicago and Atlanta homes, controlling “every aspect of their lives” in a sexually abusive "cult."
Buzzfeed reported in 2017, “Three former members of Kelly’s inner circle — Cheryl Mack, Kitti Jones, and Asante McGee — provided details supporting the parents’ worst fears. They said six women live in properties rented by Kelly in Chicago and the Atlanta suburbs, and he controls every aspect of their lives: dictating what they eat, how they dress, when they bathe, when they sleep, and how they engage in sexual encounters that he records.”
Natalie Bennett, director of the Women’s Leadership and Resource Center at UIC, told NBC 5 that UIC being involved with Kelly “in any way” was contrary to the school’s values of diversity, equity and inclusivity. She stated, “We really want to send a message to not just him, but also the university that we … want survivor’s voices to be taken seriously.”
Buzzfeed also stated:
Mack, Jones, and McGee claim that women who live with Kelly, who he calls his “babies,” are required to call him “Daddy” and must ask his permission to leave the Chicago recording studio or their assigned rooms in the “guest house” Kelly rents near his own rented mansion in suburban Atlanta … Kelly confiscates the women’s cell phones, they said, so they cannot contact their friends and family; he gives them new phones that they are only allowed to use to contact him or others with his permission. Kelly films his sexual activities, McGee and Jones said, and shows the videos to men in his circle.