R. Kelly leaves jail after posting $100K in sex abuse case

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R. Kelly walks out of Cook County Jail with his defense attorney, Steve Greenberg, after posting $100,000 bail, Monday afternoon, Feb. 25, 2019, in Chicago. The R&B star walked out of a Chicago jail Monday after posting $100,000 bail that will allow him to go free while awaiting trial on charges that he sexually abused […]

R. Kelly walked out of a Chicago jail Monday after posting $100,000 bail that allows him to go free while awaiting trial on charges that he sexually abused four people dating back to 1998, including three underage girls.

Hours earlier, the R&B star pleaded not guilty to the allegations after spending the weekend behind bars. He said little during the brief arraignment, telling the judge only his name. His lawyers spoke on his behalf.

The singer-songwriter was arrested Friday on 10 counts of aggravated sexual abuse. A judge set bond at $1 million, meaning Kelly had to post 10 percent of that amount to be released. Court records show a 47-year-old woman from the Chicago suburb of Romeoville, Illinois, posted the $100,000 bail and identified herself on the bond slip as “a friend” of Kelly, according to the Chicago Tribune.

Kelly will be forbidden from having any contact with females younger than 18.

The black van that took the entertainer away from the jail stopped in the parking lot of a large downtown McDonald’s. He did not immediately emerge, but some members of his entourage stood outside the vehicle and a dark-colored Mercedes-Benz parked next to it.

The McDonald’s, a popular tourist attraction, was known as Chicago’s Rock ‘n’ Roll McDonald’s before being remodeled and losing its music theme.

The recording artist has been trailed for decades by allegations that he violated underage girls and women and held some as virtual slaves. Kelly has consistently denied any sexual misconduct, and he was acquitted of child pornography charges in 2008.

Attorney Michael Avenatti, who said he represents two Kelly accusers, said his legal team gave prosecutors a second video Monday that shows Kelly sexually abusing a minor. Avenatti previously gave prosecutors video evidence that he said showed Kelly having sex with an underage girl.

Avenatti said the second video involves a 14-year-old girl. He said the footage from 1999 or 2000 is about 55 minutes long, but he did not say if it was the same 14-year-old girl seen in the first video he turned over to the authorities.

“The conduct in the tape can be described as nothing short of outrageous, illegal. It leaves no question as to Mr. Kelly’s guilt,” Avenatti said.

Avenatti said he is aware of a third tape, but he did not provide details.

Defense attorney Steve Greenberg reiterated at a news conference that Kelly has done nothing wrong and said no one has shown him any evidence to the contrary.

“Everybody is entitled to a defense. Everybody is entitled to the presumption of innocence. We should all be taking a step back. Let’s see what happens, what the evidence is and how this plays out,” Greenberg said.

Details of the allegations against Kelly emerged Saturday when the prosecution released four detailed documents – one for each accuser – outlining the basis for the charges. The allegations date back as far as 1998 and span more than a decade.

A girl who attended Kelly’s child pornography trial in 2008 got his autograph after a court session. He later invited her to his home in the Chicago suburb of Olympia Fields, where they had sex multiple times starting the following May, when she was 16, according to the documents, which said he also slapped, choked and spit on the girl.

In 1998, another girl reported meeting Kelly at a restaurant where she was having a 16th birthday party. Kelly’s manager gave her the singer’s business card and suggested she call Kelly. The girl’s mother heard the exchange, took the card and told the manager her daughter was 16.

But her daughter later retrieved the card from her purse. She contacted Kelly, who told her to take a cab to his studio, where they had sex periodically for a year, the documents said. After the first encounter, she was given an envelope of cash.

In early 2003, a Chicago hairdresser told prosecutors that she thought she was going to braid Kelly’s hair, but he pulled down his pants and instead tried to force her to give him oral sex. The woman, who was 24, was able to pull away, but Kelly ejaculated on her and spit in her face, the documents said.

Kelly’s DNA was found in semen on one of the accuser’s shirts, and semen found on a shirt worn by another was submitted for DNA testing, Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx said. It was not clear when the accusers turned the shirts over to authorities.

Rising from poverty on Chicago’s South Side, Kelly broke into the R&B scene in 1993 with his first solo album, “12 Play,” which produced such popular sex-themed songs as “Your Body’s Callin'” and “Bump N’ Grind.” He has written numerous hits for himself and other artists, including Celine Dion, Michael Jackson and Lady Gaga.

The jury in 2008 acquitted Kelly of child pornography charges that centered on a graphic video that prosecutors said showed him having sex with a girl as young as 13. He and the female allegedly seen with him denied they were in the 27-minute video, even though the picture quality was good and witnesses testified it was them, and she did not take the stand.

Each count of the new charges carries up to seven years in prison, making it possible for Kelly to receive up to 70 years. Probation is also an option.

The walls began closing in on Kelly after the release of a BBC documentary about him last year and the multipart Lifetime documentary “Surviving R. Kelly,” which aired last month. Together they detailed allegations that he held women against their will and ran a “sex cult.”


The Latest on the sexual abuse case against R&B singer R. Kelly (all times local):

Authorities say R. Kelly has posted bail and will be released from a Chicago jail within the hour.

Cook County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Sophia Ansari said Monday that Kelly posted his $100,000 bail after spending the weekend in jail.

The R&B singer’s bail amount was 10 percent of the $1 million bond set by a judge Saturday.

During a hearing earlier Monday, Kelly’s lawyer pleaded not guilty on his behalf to all 10 counts of aggravated sexual abuse that he faces. Prosecutors allege that he sexually abused four women, including three who were minors at the time.
  
Kelly denies wrongdoing.
  
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2:30 p.m.
  
A woman who says R. Kelly sexually abused her beginning when she was 17 years old blasted statements by the R&B singer’s attorney that Kelly’s accusers are lying.
  
Lizette Martinez, who was featured in the documentary “Surviving R. Kelly,” said at a news conference Monday in Los Angeles that Kelly is a “predator” who “must be held accountable for the lives he’s ruined.”
  
Martinez said it is “irresponsible” for Kelly’s lawyer, Steve Greenberg, to call Kelly’s accusers liars. She said the only person lying is Kelly and that he has done so “for more than 20 years.”
  
During a hearing earlier Monday in Chicago, Greenberg pleaded not guilty on Kelly’s behalf to 10 counts of aggravated sexual abuse involving four women, including three who prosecutors allege were underage when the abuse occurred.
  
Kelly, who was acquitted of child pornography charges in 2008, has denied wrongdoing.
  
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1:50 a.m.
  
Attorney Gloria Allred is pushing back against R. Kelly’s lawyer’s assertion that the women who have accused the R&B singer of sexually abusing them are lying.
  
Allred said at a news conference Monday in Los Angeles that she represents more than six women who say they were abused by Kelly.
  
One of them, Lizette Martinez, said at the news conference that she met Kelly at a shopping mall when she was 17 years old and that he abused her from 1995 until 1999.
  
Allred also said Kelly’s accusers have been subjected to abuse by the singer’s fans.
  
During a hearing earlier Monday in Chicago, Kelly’s lawyer pleaded not guilty on his behalf to 10 counts of aggravated sexual abuse involving four women, including three who prosecutors allege were underage when the abuse occurred.
  
Kelly, who was acquitted of child pornography charges in 2008, has denied wrongdoing.
  
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12:20 p.m.
  
R. Kelly’s lawyer says he expects the R&B singer to post bail Monday evening.
  
Attorney Steve Greenberg said Monday afternoon that Kelly’s ability to post bail isn’t affected by a child support case involving the singer because that case is a civil court matter.
  
Greenberg reiterated at the news conference that his position is that Kelly has done nothing wrong and said no one has shown him any evidence to the contrary.
  
During a hearing earlier Monday, Greenberg pleaded not guilty on Kelly’s behalf to 10 counts of aggravated sexual abuse involving four females, including three who prosecutors allege were underage when the abuse occurred.
  
Kelly, who was acquitted of child pornography charges in 2008, has denied wrongdoing and his attorney says he’s confident the singer will be vindicated.
  
___
  
11:10 a.m.
  
Attorney Michael Avenatti says his legal team has turned over to prosecutors a second video that he alleges shows R&B singer R. Kelly sexually abusing a minor.
  
Avenatti, who represents two Kelly victims, previously gave prosecutors video evidence of what he says shows the singer having sex with an underage girl. He told reporters Monday that the second video also involves a 14-year-old girl, is about 55 minutes long and is from 1999 or 2000. He did not say if it was the same 14-year-old girl who he alleged was in the first video he turned over to the authorities.
  
The attorney says he has learned of a third tape but did not provide details about it.
  
Kelly’s lawyer pleaded not guilty on his behalf Monday to 10 counts of aggravated sexual abuse involving four females, including three who were underage when prosecutors allege that the abuse occurred. Kelly, who was acquitted of child pornography charges in 2008, has denied wrongdoing and his attorney says he’s confident the singer will be vindicated.
  
-This item has been corrected to reflect that Avenatti did not say whether the two videos he turned over to the authorities depict the same girl.
  
___
  
9:55 a.m.
  
R&B star R. Kelly’s attorney has entered a not guilty plea on his client’s behalf to multiple charges of criminal sexual abuse.
  
Kelly appeared in a Chicago courtroom Monday for his arraignment with defense attorney Steve Greenberg.
  
Kelly’s next court date has been scheduled for March 22.
  
Kelly is charged with 10 counts of aggravated sexual abuse involving four females, including three who were underage when prosecutors allege that the abuse occurred. Kelly, who was acquitted of child pornography charges in 2008, has denied wrongdoing and his attorney says he’s confident the singer will be vindicated.
  
___
  
9:10 a.m.
  
R. Kelly has arrived in a Chicago court for another hearing in the sexual abuse case against him.
  
The Grammy-winning R&B singer spent the weekend in jail and showed up for Monday’s hearing in an orange jail jumpsuit. His lawyer, Steve Greenberg, says Kelly’s confidants are making arrangements to pay his $100,000 bail, but that coordinating the payment is complicated. He says Kelly could be released Monday or Tuesday.
  
At Monday’s hearing, Kelly’s case was assigned to the judge who would preside over the trial, Cook County Associate Judge Lawrence Flood.
  
Kelly is charged with 10 counts of aggravated sexual abuse involving four females, including three who were underage when prosecutors allege that the abuse occurred. Kelly, who was acquitted of child pornography charges in 2008, has denied wrongdoing and his attorney says he’s confident the singer will be vindicated.
  
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8:30 a.m.
  
Attorney Michael Avenatti says his legal team has obtained a second video that he alleges shows R&B singer R. Kelly sexually assaulting a minor.
  
Kelly has been charged with 10 counts of aggravated sexual abuse involving four victims, three of whom were minors. The 52-year-old singer remains jailed in Chicago on $1 million bond.
  
Avenatti says he represents two Kelly victims and previously gave prosecutors video evidence of the singer having sex with an underage girl.
  
Avenatti tweeted Monday morning that his team now has a second video “showing R. Kelly engaged in sexual assault of a minor,” and that he plans to give the video to prosecutors Monday.
  
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7:20 a.m.
  
R&B star R. Kelly is expected to appear in court after spending the weekend in a Chicago jail following his arrest on sexual abuse charges.
  
Kelly’s attorney, Steve Greenberg, says a judge will assign a trial judge to the case during a brief hearing Monday. Kelly is expected to attend.
  
The 52-year-old Kelly was charged in a grand jury indictment unsealed Friday with 10 counts of aggravated sexual abuse involving four victims, three of whom were minors.
  
A judge on Saturday set bond at $1 million, requiring the Grammy Award-winning singer to pay 10 percent. Among the conditions of release is that Kelly have no contact with females younger than 18.
  
R. Kelly is one of the best-selling music artists of all time. He remains jailed as confidants make arrangements to pay the $100,000 bail needed to free him.
  
___
  
12 a.m.
  
R. Kelly’s attorney says arrangements are being made to pay the R&B singer’s $100,000 bail to free him while he awaits trial for aggravated sexual abuse.
  
Steve Greenberg told The Associated Press on Sunday that Kelly could be out as early as Monday, but he added that others have to act for him and the coordination is complicated because Kelly is behind bars.
  
The 52-year-old Kelly faces 10 sexual abuse counts involving four victims, three of whom were minors. The charges were announced on Friday and Kelly turned himself in to police hours later. Greenberg said Kelly denies the allegations.
  
A judge Saturday set bond at $1 million, requiring Kelly to pay 10 percent of that to go free. Greenberg told the judge that Kelly isn’t wealthy despite decades of success creating hit songs.
 

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