The Case for a New State Revisited: The Affirmation of “Surviving R. Kelly” in Cook County, Illinois
Prosecutors in Illinois’ Cook County have dropped state sex-crime charges against singer R. Kelly, who has already been convicted of federal charges set to keep him in prison for decades.
Last week, prosecutors had asked for Kelly to be sentenced to 25 years in prison on the Illinois federal conviction — to be served only after the conclusion of his current 30-year prison term in New York on separate racketeering and sex trafficking convictions.
Prosecutors at Kelly’s federal trial in Chicago portrayed him as a master manipulator who used his fame and wealth to reel in star-struck fans to sexually abuse, in some cases to video record them, and then discard them.
Kelly is expected to serve his sentence until he’s in his 80s. According to CBS Chicago, Leinenweber sentenced Kelly on Thursday to 240 months total, but 228 of those months are to be served concurrently with his New York federal sentence — meaning that he will serve only one more year on the Illinois federal charges.
“I understand how hard it was for these victims to come forward and tell their stories. I have the utmost respect for everyone who came forward and my admiration for their courage.
The result may not be what they expected, but we do feel that justice has been served due to the sentences Mr. Kelly is facing.
The Cook County prosecutors called on victims to come forward after the airing of “Surviving R. Kelly,” a series that chronicled allegations of abuse against the singer.
The office of Foxx will try to find justice for the other victims of sexual abuse who don’t have the power of a documentary to reveal their abusers.
One of Kelly’s victims said she was disappointed in the decision because Kelly is still appealing his federal convictions.
Fish questioned how the case was dropped back in November, because the prosecutor’s office told him about it. “It is unclear to us why it waited so long to announce the decision publicly.”
After the airing of Lifetime’s docu-series, “Surviving R. Kelly”, all criminal investigations were kicked into high-gear, ending with a new state.
Kelly rose from poverty in Chicago to superstardom with the hit song “I Believe I Can Fly” and sex-themed songs like “Bump n’ Grind.”
New charges against R. Kelly in CHICAGO, New York, and Brooklyn for sexual assaults and enticement based on the documentary Foxx on Lifetime
Those accusations didn’t end in a conviction. The new charges include counts of criminal sexual assault, and criminal sexual abuse. Months later, the federal cases in Illinois and Brooklyn emerged.
The documentary Foxx was referring to is Surviving R. Kelly, the six-part series that aired on Lifetime in 2019, raising new claims of abuse and statutory rape against the singer. The series caused many women to speak out, leading to the new charges against Kelly.
CHICAGO — Federal prosecutors Thursday asked a judge to give singer R. Kelly 25 more years in prison for his child pornography and enticement convictions last year in Chicago, which would add to 30 years he recently began serving in a New York case.
In their sentencing recommendation filed late Thursday, prosecutors called Kelly a “serial sexual predator with no remorse” and described his behavior as “sadistic.”
The guidelines for sentencing in the Chicago case recommend a sentence of about seven years, but prosecutors are aware that it will be more than that. They argued for a long sentence and an order to be served after the New York sentence was appropriate.
Bonjean argued that Kelly’s life of trauma, including abuse as a child and illiteracy throughout adulthood, justified a lighter sentence for him.
Kelly’s sentence will be up to Judge Harry Leinenweber in Chicago to decide, and he will have to make that decision based on his New York sentence or concurrent sentence.
“While Kelly was not a child in the late 1990s, he also was not the middle-aged man he was at the time of his 2019 indictment,” she argued. “Kelly was a damaged man in his late 20s.”
She said Kelly has paid a heavy price from his legal troubles. He once was worth $1 billion but now he is penniless, she said.
“I will forever be the girl that R Kelly peed on,” Jane said through the attorney, referencing the infamous sex tape video shown during his trial which showed Kelly urinating on a victim.
Through the allegations, Kelly was one of the most successful R&B artists of the 1990s and 2000s, known for hit songs “Bump N’ Grind,” “Ignition (Remix)” and “I Believe I Can Fly,” which won him three Grammy Awards. He’s been nominated for 26 times at the grammys.
She lied about a sexual relationship with her boyfriend, Robert, in 2002, according to the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services, Law Enforcement and the Chicago Sun-Times
The advisory sentencing guidelines offer a range of 14 to 17.5 years in prison, according to the prosecution’s calculations, or 11.25 to 14 years in prison, according to the defense’s calculations.
She testified that she falsely denied they had a sexual relationship in interviews with the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services, Chicago police investigators and to a grand jury in 2002.
I was afraid of exposing Robert. Because I was afraid of what might happen to my parents,” she said. “I also did not want that person to be me.”
According to the Chicago Sun-Times, which was in the courtroom and is part of Chicago Public Media, an attorney for “Jane” read a statement from her that said: “Robert shattered me. I need some answers. And I need Robert in jail for as long as the law will allow.”