Chicago prosecutor drops sex abuse charges against R. Kelly

CHICAGO– A Chicago prosecutor said Monday she was dropping sexual abuse charges against singer R. Kelly, following federal convictions in two courts that ensure R’s disgrace.&B star will be locked away for decades.

Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx announced the decision a day before a court hearing on state charges accusing him of sexually abusing four people, including three minors. Foxx said she would ask a judge to dismiss the charges at Tuesday’s hearing.

She acknowledged the decision “could be disappointing” for women who have come forward to charge Kelly with crimes.

“Mr. Kelly is considering the possibility of never getting out of jail again. … We believe justice has been served,” Foxx said.

Since Kelly was indicted in Cook County in 2019, federal juries in Chicago and New York have convicted him of a range of crimes, including child pornography, incitement, racketeering and sex trafficking. linked to allegations that he victimized women and girls.

Kelly, born Robert Sylvester Kelly, is serving a 30-year prison sentence in the New York case and awaits sentencing Feb. 23 in federal court in Chicago. He is appealing these convictions. Based on the New York sentence alone, the 56-year-old will not be eligible for release until he is around 80 years old.

Another sexual misconduct case is pending in Hennepin County, Minnesota, where the Grammy Award winner is facing solicitation charges. That case was also put on hold while federal business unfolded. Minnesota prosecutors have not said whether they still intend to prosecute Kelly.

Prosecutors sometimes choose to go ahead with more trials for fear that convictions elsewhere could be overturned on appeals. They see an opportunity for additional convictions as insurance.

Known for his hit ‘I Believe I Can Fly’ and sex-infused songs such as ‘Bump n’ Grind’, Kelly sold millions of albums even after allegations of his abusing young girls began to surface. circulating publicly in the 1990s. He beat child pornography charges in Chicago in 2008, when a jury acquitted him.

Widespread outrage over Kelly’s sexual misconduct didn’t emerge until the #MeToo judgment and the release of the Lifetime docuseries “Surviving R. Kelly.”

After that series aired in early 2019, Foxx pleaded with accusers to come forward so prosecutors could press charges. She announced the Cook County indictment months before federal cases in New York and Chicago. Foxx’s office alleged that he repeatedly sought out girls for sex, including one he met at his 16th birthday party and another who met the R&B star during his trial in 2008.

Federal prosecutors in New York told jurors at his 2021 trial that Kelly used his entourage of managers and assistants to meet girls and keep them obedient, an operation that prosecutors say amounted to a criminal enterprise.

Last year, prosecutors in Kelly’s federal trial in Chicago described him as a master manipulator who used his fame and wealth to lure adoring fans, some of them minors, into sexually abusing and then shunning them. Four accusers testified.

While prosecutors in that case won convictions on six of the 13 counts against him in that case, the government lost the count – which Kelly and his then business manager managed to fake. his trial for child pornography in 2008.


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ABC News

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