NEW YORK, September 18 – A former assistant to R. Kelly said Friday she once saw him engage in sexual activity with one of the women he is accused of abusing, as prosecutors were nearing the end of their sex trafficking case presentation against the R&B singer. .
On day 18 of testimony at Kelly’s trial in Brooklyn federal court, Cheryl Mack, the mother of music producer London on da Track, said she saw the woman start massaging Kelly backstage at a Connecticut concert where it was happening.
“It was kind of my signal to go,” Mack said. “I was very uncomfortable.” She said as she left the room she saw the woman moving her head towards Kelly’s groin.
Mack also said Kelly lost her temper in 2015 after allegedly spoiling a surprise birthday party for former stylist Kash Howard, and had him sign a “letter of apology” which included false claims according to which she had accepted bribes from booking agents.
“I apologized out of fear,” Mack said.
Several witnesses said Kelly had them write letters of apology, allegedly to absolve her of misconduct, but which prosecutors could use to illustrate the tight control witnesses said Kelly demanded from those around her.
The last prosecution witness on Friday was Dawn Hughes, a clinical psychologist who spoke about how people might prepare underage girls for sex and how victims cope with trauma. Defense lawyers are expected to cross-examine her on Monday.
Kelly, 54, pleaded not guilty to alleged grooming and preying on women and girls as early as the mid-1990s, when he rose to stardom with music, including the 1996 smash. I believe i can fly.
The singer, whose full name is Robert Sylvester Kelly, faces one count of racketeering and eight counts of illegally transporting people across state borders for the purpose of prostitution.
Kelly’s indictment says he abused six underage women and girls, including singer Aaliyah, whom Kelly illegally married in 1994 when she was 15. Aaliyah died in a plane crash in 2001.
Prosecution witnesses said Kelly instilled fear by demanding that they obey his strict rules, including asking women and girls to call him “Daddy” and punishing those who disobeyed, including demanding sex unwanted.
Kelly’s attorneys attempted to portray his accusers as fans who once hoped to capitalize on the singer’s fame but felt left out, and wondered why they and former employees hadn’t left Kelly sooner or later. were returned to the police.
Deveraux Cannick, one of Kelly’s attorneys, attempted, during Mack’s cross-examination, to show jurors that she should have known that she should not have signed a letter of apology, given that ‘she was in her late forties and had many years of experience in the music industry.
“I wasn’t thinking at all,” Mack told him.
The trial began on August 18.
Kelly has faced sexual abuse charges for almost two decades.
The review increased after the #MeToo movement began in late 2017, and Lifetime aired the documentary Survive R. Kelly in January 2019.
Kelly also faces sex-related charges in Illinois and Minnesota. – Reuters