Prosecutor: R. Kelly predator who used fame to abuse minors

Sep 12, 2022, 8:54 AM | Updated: 9:34 am
FILE - Musician R. Kelly, center, leaves the Daley Center after a hearing in his child support case...

FILE - Musician R. Kelly, center, leaves the Daley Center after a hearing in his child support case on May 8, 2019, in Chicago. Closing arguments are scheduled Monday, Sept. 12, 2022 for R. Kelly and two co-defendants in the R&B singer's trial on federal charges of trial-fixing, child pornography and enticing minors for sex, with jury deliberations to follow. (AP Photo/Matt Marton, File)

(AP Photo/Matt Marton, File)

CHICAGO (AP) — R. Kelly is a sexual predator who parlayed his fame to abuse minors, a prosecutor said Monday during closing arguments at the R&B star’s child pornography and trial-fixing trial.

Addressing jurors in a 25th floor courtroom in Chicago, Kelly’s hometown, Elizabeth Pozol cited one of Kelly’s accusers who was the government’s start witness at the monthlong trial.

Referring to the accuser by a pseudonym, “Jane,” Pozol said Kelly “took advantage of Jane’s youth. He repeatedly abused her. He performed degrading acts upon her for his own sick pleasure.”

She said Kelly and his two co-defendants helped to recover child pornography videos and hid evidence before Kelly’s 2008 trail, at which he was acquitted.

She said they acted to cover up the fact that “R. Kelly … the R&B superstar … is actually a sexual predator.”

Minutes before the defense rested late Friday, Kelly co-defendant and ex-business manager Derrell McDavid ended three days on the stand. He testified for nearly two days that he had believed Kelly when he denied abusing minors — then said he started having doubts about Kelly’s believability during the trial that started last month.

Kelly and McDavid are charged with fixing Kelly’s 2008 state child pornography trial — at which Kelly was acquitted — by threatening witnesses and concealing video evidence. Both also face child pornography charges. Another co-defendant, Kelly associate Milton Brown, is accused of receiving child pornography.

Prosecutors normally get a chance to call witnesses in a rebuttal of the defense case. But when they told Judge Harry Leinenweber that they needed time to prepare, he said there would be no rebuttal and the case would go straight to closing arguments Monday morning.

McDavid was the only one of the three defendants to testify on his own behalf.

Kelly, 55, already was sentenced to 30 years in prison in June after a separate federal trial in New York.

Known for his smash hit “I Believe I Can Fly” and for sex-infused songs such as “Bump n’ Grind,” Kelly sold millions of albums even after allegations of sexual misconduct began circulating in the 1990s. Widespread outrage emerged after the #MeToo reckoning and the 2019 docuseries “Surviving R. Kelly.”

During Kelly’s monthlong trial in 2008, state prosecutors played a 30-minute, sexually explicit video dozens of times on large screens throughout the courtroom. Prosecutors said it showed Kelly abusing Jane — then 14 years old.

The ongoing trial is in some ways a do-over of the 2008 trial. The video was at the heart of that trial and is also in evidence at the current trial.

Jane, then an adult, did not testify at that 2008 trial, which jurors cited as a reason they couldn’t convict Kelly. She testified at the current trial that she was the person in that video. She also said Kelly sexually abused her hundreds of times starting when she was 14.

___

Follow Michael Tarm on Twitter at https://twitter.com/mtarm and find AP’s full coverage of the R. Kelly trial at https://apnews.com/hub/r-kelly

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

Local resident Ekaterina, 22, stands next to her residential building that was damaged after an ove...
Associated Press

Putin signs annexation of Ukrainian regions as losses mount

KYIV, Ukraine (AP) — Russian President Vladimir Putin has signed laws formally absorbing four Ukrainian regions into Russia, even as its military struggles to control the territory that was illegally annexed. The documents finalizing the annexation, carried out in defiance of international laws, were published on a Russian government website on Wednesday morning. Earlier this […]
3 hours ago
FILE - Residents who rode out the storm arrive at a dock to evacuate by boat in the aftermath of Hu...
Associated Press

Hurricane Ian closes some Florida schools indefinitely

The devastation from Hurricane Ian has left schools shuttered indefinitely in parts of Florida, leaving storm-weary families anxious for word on when and how children can get back to classrooms. As rescue and recovery operations continue in the storm’s aftermath, several school systems in hard-hit counties in southwestern Florida can’t say for sure when they’ll […]
3 hours ago
FILE - In this image made from video, Taiwan's Defense Minister Chiu Kuo-cheng speaks in Taipei, Ta...
Associated Press

Taiwan vows to respond to China’s military flight incursions

TAIPEI, Taiwan (AP) — Taiwan’s defense minister on Wednesday said the island will respond to incursions into its airspace by Chinese warplanes and drones, but gave no details on specific actions. Responding to questions from legislators, Chiu Kuo-cheng said China’s newly aggressive stance had changed what Taiwan would define as a “first strike” that would […]
3 hours ago
Associated Press

Detained Iranian-American, 85, leaves Iran for Oman

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates (AP) — An 85-year-old Iranian-American held by Iran over internationally criticized spying charges left the country Wednesday for Oman, officials said, after increasing pressure to free him amid his struggles with poor health. His 50-year-old son, however, remains in Iran. The release of Baquer Namazi marks the first American to be […]
3 hours ago
Ukrainian soldiers sit on an armoured vehicle as they drive on a road between Izium and Lyman in Uk...
Associated Press

Live Updates: Russia-Ukraine War

KYIV, Ukraine — Ukraine’s presidential office says that at least five civilians have been killed and eight have been wounded by the latest Russian shelling. A statement on Wednesday says Russian troops used six Iranian suicide drones to strike the town of Bila Tserkva in the Kyiv region, leaving one person wounded. The strikes were […]
3 hours ago
Associated Press

Lebanese lawmaker demands trapped bank savings

BEIRUT (AP) — A Lebanese parliamentarian on Wednesday entered a bank branch near Beirut, demanding some of her trapped savings to cover medical expenses. Cash-strapped Lebanon in recent weeks has witnessed a surge in depositors storming bank branches to forcefully withdraw their locked savings as the country’s economy continues to spiral. On Tuesday, depositors stormed […]
3 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

...
Quantum Fiber

How high-speed fiber internet can improve everyday life

Quantum Fiber supplies unlimited data with speeds up to 940 mbps, enough to share 4K videos with coworkers 20 times faster than a cable.
...
Day & Night Air Conditioning, Heating and Plumbing

Here are 4 signs the HVAC unit needs to be replaced

Pool renovations and kitchen upgrades may seem enticing, but at the forefront of these investments arguably should be what residents use the most. In a state where summertime is sweltering, access to a functioning HVAC unit can be critical.
...
Sanderson Ford

Don’t let rising fuel prices stop you from traveling Arizona this summer

There's no better time to get out on the open road and see what the beautiful state of Arizona has to offer. But if the cost of gas is putting a cloud over your summer vacation plans, let Sanderson Ford help with their wide-range selection of electric vehicles.
Prosecutor: R. Kelly predator who used fame to abuse minors