R. Kelly faces conviction in child sex abuse trial: Live Updates
Throughout singer R. Kelly’s six-week trial, federal prosecutors have called 45 witnesses, including former employees, a doctor who treated him for herpes for more than a decade and relatives of his accusers. But the basis of the case was based on his encounters with several women, some of whose identities were obscured in court.
R&B artist Aaliyah
Mr Kelly met Aaliyah in 1992 at his family home in Michigan and produced her debut album, ‘Age Ain’t Nothing but a Number’.
When he was 13, he began sexually abusing her, prosecutors said. In 1994, Mr Kelly illegally married her, believing she might be pregnant and seeking to avoid prosecution. The two men had a 10-minute ceremony in a Sheraton hotel room in the Chicago area. Their marriage was later annulled.
Aaliyah, whose full name was Aaliyah Dana Haughton, died in 2001 in a plane crash aged 22.
Jerhonda Pace, the first accuser to testify
Ms Pace spoke on the first two days of the trial, becoming the first accuser to testify against Mr Kelly in court. She was also one of the first women to go public with her accusations in a 2017 BuzzFeed article that sparked a wave of public outrage against the singer.
She testified that Mr Kelly had sex with her in 2009, when she was 16 and in his 40s.
Angela, a backup singer who said she was in high school when the abuse started
As the first victim to give a statement at the sentencing hearing, a woman who only gave her name as Angela, previously said she met Mr Kelly around 1991, when She was between 14 and 15 years old.
Mr Kelly began having sex with her when she was a minor and a high school student, she testified at the trial last year. She also recounted how he often pressured her and several other backup performers to have sex.
Angela was also the first accuser to testify that she saw Mr Kelly and Aaliyah engage in sexual acts.
During the sentencing hearing, Angela stood at a lectern as she looked directly at Mr Kelly and spoke in an unwavering voice. She called Mr. Kelly a Pied Piper who lured children with his money and fame.
“With each addition of a new victim, you grew in wickedness,” she said. “You have used your fame and power to groom and train underage boys and girls for your own sexual gratification.”
Today, “we get our names back,” she said. “We are no longer the prey we once were.”
Stephanie, who was also a minor when she was abused
A woman who spoke at the trial giving only her first name, Stephanie, said she approached Mr Kelly in a Nike store in 1999, when she was 17, to ask him to audition for a friend who aspired to be a singer.
Mr Kelly agreed, in exchange for sexual favours, she said. The next six months were “the lowest period of my life,” Stephanie told jurors.
During the sentencing hearing, Stephanie, who was speaking in fifth grade and nicknamed Jane Doe No. 2, described in detail how Mr Kelly would come back sweaty after basketball games with his friends before having him practice the oral sex on him.
“I felt special, because someone who was special to the world cared about me,” she said, adding, “I hope you go to jail for the rest of your life.”
A woman who testified under a pseudonym
The woman, who gave some of the most explicit testimony of physical and sexual abuse at trial, initially supported Mr Kelly in a high-profile interview with Gayle King of ‘CBS This Morning’ in 2019.
But she told jurors the singer often asked her to repeat answers to potential questions from reporters or the public, providing her with the “right” answers – even if they were wrong.
Faith, who said that the singer did not reveal a sexually transmitted infection
Faith, who was the sixth woman to speak at the sentencing hearing, told the trial she started having sex with Mr Kelly in 2017 when she was 19 year. But the encounters sometimes turned violent, she said at the time, and on one occasion Mr Kelly brought her into a room with a gun, grabbed her by the neck and pulled her down. ordered to perform a sexual act on her.
Shortly after another sexual encounter, she was diagnosed with herpes. Faith said Mr Kelly never told her he had the incurable disease. “I said, ‘Are you going to use a condom?’ she recalled asking Mr. Kelly when they first had sex. “He said, ‘We don’t need a condom.'”
During the hearing, Faith appeared with her father by her side. “I hope you forgive yourself,” she said, crying. “I forgive myself.”
Sonja, who said she was imprisoned and raped
Sonja, who also spoke at the sentencing hearing, was a 22-year-old radio trainee when she met Mr Kelly outside a mall in Salt Lake City, and he invited her to come to Chicago for an interview in 2003, according to earlier. testimony.
But when she arrived, she previously said, Mr Kelly locked her in a room in his studio for days. She had nothing to eat, but they finally brought her something to eat. Then, after taking several bites, she started feeling sleepy, she said. She told jurors she woke up later to find her underwear draped over the sofa and Mr Kelly pulling up his pants.
During the sentencing hearing, she described how Kelly would ask people to watch and follow her over the years. “I was scared for my life,” she said.
Sonja also emailed a statement to the court that she did not wish to read in full. But before leaving the pulpit, she added: “I hope and pray to God that we can all be healed.”