UPDATE 6/6 2:55 p.m. ET: R. Kelly pleaded not guilty to the 11 charges on Thursday, June 6, according to the Associated Press. The R&B singer left a brief court hearing in Cook County, Illinois, without speaking to reporters. A status hearing has been scheduled for June 26.
Original story below:
Facing serious prison time. R. Kelly was hit with a slew of new sexual assault charges from Chicago prosecutors on Thursday, May 30, Us Weekly can confirm.
According to court documents obtained by Us, the “Ignition” singer, 52, has been charged with 11 felony counts, some of which carry a maximum sentence of 30 years in prison.
The new charges include four counts of aggravated criminal sexual assault, two counts of criminal sexual assault by force, two counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse and three counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse against an alleged victim between the ages of 13 to 16.
The Chicago Sun Times reports that the allegations stem from offenses that allegedly occurred in 2010. They have been made on behalf of a new alleged victim and are separate from the 10 charges of aggravated criminal sexual abuse made against Kelly from four other alleged victims in February, three of whom are underage.
Kelly’s attorney, Steve Greenberg, told the Sun Times on Thursday that he has not yet seen the charges. “We’ll see what the charges are, and we’ll proceed accordingly,” he said. “I know this much: it’s old. They’re allegations from years ago.”
Gloria Allred, meanwhile, who represents several of the singer’s alleged victims, told Us exclusively that the addition of the new charges changes the outlook of his pending case drastically. “R. Kelly is facing a very serious escalation of the charges against him. He will now have to face numerous accusers in a court of law,” Allred said. “Also, whatever the result of the criminal case filed against him in Cook County, I think that it is highly likely that he will face other charges in other jurisdictions. Justice is on the way.”
The musician’s lawyer pleaded not guilty to 10 counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse on behalf of his client on February 25.
“People are going back to my past — that’s exactly what they’re trying to do — they’re going back to the past and they’re trying to add all of this stuff now to that to make all of this stuff that’s going on now [feel] real to people,” Kelly told King, 64, at the time.
Kelly also denied having sexual relations with minors: “Not true,” he told the talk show host. “Not true. Whether they’re old rumors, new rumors, future rumors, not true.”
He later broke down while discussing the allegations, standing up and shouting, “I did not do this stuff! This is not me! I’m fighting for my f–king life!”
Kelly was taken into custody once more one day after the interview aired for failing to pay his ex-wife, Drea Kelly, child support.
TMZ reported at the time that the three-time Grammy winner was indebted to his former spouse by $161,633 and had failed to meet a payment deadline.
He was released on March 9, though Sophia Ansari, a spokeswoman for Cook County Sheriff’s Department, told the Associated Press that she did not immediately know who paid the child support he owed.
Kelly is set to appear in court regarding the new charges on June 6.