February 25, 2019
By Jackie Botts
(Reuters) – Grammy-winning R&B star R. Kelly was due to appear again in a Chicago court on Monday where a judge will likely be assigned to his trial on charges that he sexually assaulted three teenage girls and a woman, a sheriff’s spokesman said.
Kelly, who has faced years of sexual abuse allegations, turned himself in to authorities on Friday after he was charged and was ordered held on a $1 million bond at a bail hearing on Saturday.
The 52-year-old performer, whose real name is Robert Kelly, is charged under a 10-count indictment with sexually assaulting three teenagers and a woman in alleged incidents dating back to 1998. Each count carries a maximum of 10 years in prison.
Prosecutors say the victims include a teenager whom Kelly met when she sought an autograph during his previous trial on child pornography charges, another whom he met at her 16th birthday party and his hairdresser, who was then 24. The singer was acquitted of the pornography charges.
A fourth charge is based on a videotape that purportedly shows Kelly and a 14-year-old girl engaged in sexual acts, according to prosecutors.
On Saturday, Kelly’s lawyer told reporters his client was innocent and had been devastated by the charges.
“We haven’t seen any evidence, any reason to believe these allegations are credible,” Kelly’s lawyer Steven Greenberg said. “He’s a rock star. He doesn’t need to have nonconsensual sex.”
The charges against the performer came just weeks after the Lifetime television network aired a six-hour documentary series entitled “Surviving R. Kelly” in which multiple women accused him of sexual misconduct and abuse.
(Reporting by Jackie Botts; Editing by Cynthia Osterman)