Girl weeps whereas testifying in opposition to R. Kelly about assault

2021-08-19 21:16:00

NEW YORK —
A key accuser on the R. Kelly sex-trafficking trial returned to the witness stand on Thursday, first claiming Kelly had a Woman Scout fetish after which weeping when a prosecutor requested her to learn out loud from a journal entry describing how he allegedly beat and choked her the final time they have been collectively in 2010.

Jerhonda Tempo, who had remained stoic throughout almost two days on the witness stand, learn how Kelly cursed at her and slapped her thrice, telling her, “It isn’t going to be an open fist subsequent time.” She wrote that he choked her and sexually assaulted her earlier than she “turned fed up with him” and left.

Tempo testified she believed Kelly gave her herpes, backing allegations by prosecutors that he broke the legislation by knowingly transmitting the STD. They provided extra proof on that time by calling his private doctor to the witness stand later Thursday to testify the singer had a protracted historical past of remedy for herpes.

Tempo, who’s pregnant and only some days from her due date, requested for a break so she may compose herself.

She resumed her testimony in Brooklyn federal court docket a day after telling jurors she was a 16-year-old virgin and a member of Kelly’s fan membership when he invited her to his mansion in 2010. Whereas there, she mentioned, she was advised to comply with “Rob’s guidelines” — edicts limiting how she may gown, who she may converse with and when she may use the toilet.

She mentioned Kelly — born Robert Sylvester Kelly — generally demanded she put on pigtails and “gown like a Woman Scout” throughout sexual encounters that Kelly usually videotaped.

On cross examination, protection lawyer Deveraux Cannick sought to point out Tempo hid her true motivations relating to Kelly and deceived him by mendacity about her age.

“You have been in truth stalking him, proper?” Cannick requested.

“That’s not proper,” she responded.

Tempo had testified earlier the she advised Kelly she was 19 after they met however had knowledgeable him she was solely 16 by the point he sexually abused her.

Cannick confronted her with a lawsuit settlement she signed indicating she agreed she by no means revealed to Kelly that she was a minor. She mentioned it was in change for hush cash.

The questioning match a theme that protection legal professionals have repeatedly pushed early within the trial: Kelly was victimized by groupies who hounded him at exhibits and afterward, solely to show in opposition to him years later when public sentiment shifted in opposition to him, they allege.

To bolster their claims in opposition to Kelly, prosecutors confirmed jurors on Thursday screenshots from Tempo’s telephone exhibiting a number of communications with Kelly in January 2010, together with a textual content from him studying, “Please name.” There was additionally a photograph of her with “Rob” tattooed to her chest. She mentioned she’s since “lined it up with a black coronary heart.”

Later, Dr. Kris McGrath advised jurors that he had been prescribing herpes treatment for Kelly since no less than 2007 and have become quick mates with him till 2019, generally analyzing the singer throughout home calls at his mansion. Kelly did not pay for remedy, however as a substitute picked up the tab for the physician to attend his concert events in Chicago, New York and elsewhere, he testified.

Tempo, the trial’s first witness, was amongst a number of feminine accusers — principally referred to in court docket as “Jane Does” — anticipated to testify at a trial scheduled to final a number of weeks. Different seemingly witnesses embody cooperating former associates who’ve by no means spoken publicly earlier than about their experiences with Kelly.

The Related Press would not identify alleged victims of sexual abuse with out their consent until they’ve shared their identities publicly. Tempo has appeared in a documentary and took part in media interviews.

Kelly, 54, has denied accusations that he preyed on Tempo and different victims throughout a 30-year profession highlighted by his smash hit “I Consider I Can Fly,” a 1996 music that turned an inspirational anthem performed at college graduations, weddings, commercials and elsewhere.

The testimony comes greater than a decade after Kelly was acquitted in a 2008 little one pornography case in Chicago. The reprieve allowed his music profession to proceed till the .MeToo period caught up with him, emboldening alleged victims to return ahead.

The ladies’s tales acquired broad publicity with the Lifetime documentary “Surviving R. Kelly.” The collection explored how an entourage of supporters protected Kelly and silenced his victims for many years, foreshadowing the federal racketeering conspiracy case that landed Kelly in jail in 2019.

The trial is going on earlier than an nameless jury of seven males and 5 ladies. Following a number of delays due principally to the pandemic, the trial unfolds beneath coronavirus precautions limiting the press and the general public to overflow courtrooms with video feeds.


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