A number of R. Kelly’s attorneys have claimed he has been attacked in prison, and have called for his release as a result.
The 53-year-old singer – who is being held on charges that include sex trafficking, racketeering and child pornography, all of which he has denied – is said to have been set upon by another inmate at Chicago’s Metropolitan Correctional Center, and his attorney Steve Greenberg has called for Kelly’s release, claiming the government “cannot ensure his safety”.
Greenberg wrote on Twitter: “Yesterday we were told that an inmate had attacked R Kelly at the MCC in Chicago.
We received conflicting reports as to the extent of his injuries.
We have not been provided any information from the jail, nor has Mr. Kelly called. We are hopeful that he was not seriously injured.
“Regardless, it is time to release Mr. Kelly. The government cannot ensure his safety, and they cannot give him his day in court.
“We should not incarcerate people indefinitely because we cannot provide them with due process!”
Douglas Anton, another attorney for the “Ignition” hitmaker – whose real name is Robert Kelly – alleged the singer was “assaulted”, but he has been told he is “OK physically”.
He tweeted: “As has been reported, Robert was assaulted at the Chicago MCC. I am advised that he is okay physically and that the other inmate simply flipped because he is “incarcerated” and it has nothing to do with Robert specifically. Will provide updates.(sic)”
Anton also revealed to CNN that the US Attorney’s Office had advised Kelly’s legal team that he was on his bed when another inmate began hitting him.
Another of Kelly’s attorneys, Tom Farinella, has also called for his release.
He told the news channel: “This incident coupled with the coronavirus restrictions at the MCC reinforces the need for Mr. Kelly to be released so he can assist in his defence with counsel and prepare for trial without the fear that his personal safety is at risk.”
What’s more, Greenberg claimed some inmates have become “upset” that protests from Kelly’s fans outside the jail have led to prisoners being locked down.
He told the New York Post: “My understanding is, every time there is a pro-R Kelly protest outside of the jail, they lock down the entire facility.
“When they do this, inmates don’t get their commissary, they don’t get their shower, stuff like that and since they’re fairly sporadic anyway, they get upset.
“So they’re penalising everyone in the facility because people are protesting in support of Kelly.”
Greenberg also claimed the ”I Believe I Can Fly“ hitmaker has been moved to solitary confinement following the alleged incident.