A Texas woman has accused Grammy award-winning R&B singer R. Kelly of sexual slavery and knowingly infecting her with a STD, according to court documents filed in Manhattan on Monday.
Faith Rodgers, 20, met the singer a year ago in San Antonio, after one of his concerts.
She claims that Kelly, 51, would lock her in a van for hours at a time, and coerced her into having sex. She said he infected her with herpes during their year-long relationship, and accused him of “luring” young girls.
Miss Rodgers was also introduced to one of the five women Kelly said he was “raising”, Jocelyn Savage.
In July 2017 Miss Savage’s parents held a news conference asking authorities to remove their daughter from Kelly’s home, claiming that she and several other girls were being controlled by Kelly and forced to perform sex acts as part of a cult. Savage denied those claims to TMZ, telling the gossip site: "I’m fine and happy. I haven’t been brainwashed."
But Miss Rodgers told CBS News on Tuesday that she felt Kelly, one of the most successful R&B singers of all time, used his fame to entrap young women.
The court documents accuse Kelly of "sexual battery" and "willfully, deliberately and maliciously" infecting Miss Rodgers with herpes.
She claims Kelly "mentally, sexually and verbally" abused her, and said she believes he "pursues teenage/underage" girls and "lures" them into engaging in sex acts.
She told the TV channel how she met him in March 2017, and exchanged numbers. He began pursuing her, then after two months flew her to New York to attend one of his shows, paying for her hotel room.
The morning after the show, he visited her in her room. She says he told her to remove her clothes, before having sex with her against her will, and repeatedly asked about her age, suggesting she looked "14, 15, or 16."
Kelly has been subject to rumours surrounding underage girls for years.
A video uploaded to Facebook on Friday, and first reported by The Grio, showed Kelly saying: “I’m handcuffed by my destiny. It’s too late. They should’ve did this shit 30 years ago.”
In 2008, he was acquitted on child pornography charges. Prosecutors alleged he made a sex tape with a girl around 14 years old. A BuzzFeed investigation details three women who say they were sexually abused by Kelly and were a part of a "sex cult." Kelly has long denied these allegations, but in response Apple and Spotify have removed his music from their playlists.
In April Miss Rodgers filed a criminal complaint with the Dallas Police Department and says under their advisement she recorded a phone call with Kelly, hoping he would admit to knowingly gave her an STD.
Kelly refused to take the bait, however, telling her: “I don’t never talk about nothing, to nobody on the phone. I don’t do that. I don’t care what the situation is."
Miss Rodgers claims Kelly also routinely locked her in rooms and cars.
"The first time I was left in the car for a total of eight hours that night. And the child lock was on the car," she recalled.
Her lawsuit also charges that Kelly "locked (Rodgers) in secluded areas including rooms, studios and motor vehicles, for extended periods of time in order to punish (her) for failing to please (him) sexually."
Miss Rodgers believes Kelly was priming her to join a group of women she says he lives and travels with.
"He goes on to tell me that he raises five women. Some of them had been with him for 15 years," she said.
"And he basically was trying to make it seem like it was a family thing. He described these women as being his family. Then he goes on to tell me, ‘You know what? I love you because you remind me of them.’"
Miss Rodgers said she stayed with him for a year because he was not “devious” all the time.
"It’s not like all the time he was just, you know, this devious person," she said.
"There has been times where he’s crying. And he’s telling me, you know, about his children, about his ex-wife, comparing himself to Michael Jackson and how, you know, how the media destroyed him.
“And he felt like that’s that what was going on in his life."
Miss Rodgers said she filed the lawsuit to prevent other young girls going through her ordeal.
"And he’s going to do the exact same thing. But it could get worse. You know, I chose to walk away. What about the ones who don’t walk away?" she said.
Kelly’s representatives said they have no comment on Miss Rodgers’ allegations or the new lawsuit.
In a Washington Post article in April, a representative for Kelly said the singer "categorically denies all claims and allegations."
Miss Rodgers said she is not looking for a settlement and her lawyers say they will be seeking a jury trial.
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