June 14, 2008 |
A Cook County jury Friday acquitted R&B superstar R. Kelly of child pornography charges, ending a high-profile case that began more than six years ago. Jurors said they put little stock in the prosecution's star witness, a woman who claimed she participated in videotaped sex acts with Kelly and a person the government alleged was Kelly's then-underage goddaughter.
May 21, 2008 |
The paparazzi and TV news crews have spent weeks scouting the Cook County Criminal Court for the perfect spot to shoot arrivals, departures and stand-ups. The judge presiding over the case sought advice from a fellow jurist in Santa Barbara County on how to handle a case involving an international celebrity and the media blitz that is sure to follow. Inside the freshly painted courthouse, reporters from MTV News, Jet and Blender magazines jockeyed with local journalists for seats. In the city where prosecutors took down Al Capone, and high-profile courtroom dramas normally feature corrupt politicians and mobsters, the child pornography case against R&B superstar R. Kelly that began this week has brought Chicago a relatively unusual legal experience: the salacious celebrity trial.
May 17, 2008 |
A Chicago judge has denied a motion from news organizations seeking immediate access to sealed court records and transcripts in the R. Kelly child pornography trial. Judge Vincent Gaughan said keeping the material under wraps was the only way to guarantee a fair trial. The R&B singer has pleaded not guilty to charges he videotaped himself having sex with an underage girl. Opening arguments begin Tuesday.
May 10, 2008 |
CHICAGO -- Sex scandals have derailed countless pop-star careers, but R. Kelly's has remained robust, even with his long-delayed trial on 14 counts of child pornography looming. Jury selection began Friday. The singer, 41, has sold more than 12 million records and videos since the charges first surfaced in June 2002. Last year he scored three top-10 R&B singles, and his 2007 album, "Double Up," sold nearly a million copies despite an industry-wide economic slump.
December 22, 2007 |
R. Kelly avoided having his bond revoked Friday in his child pornography case, but a Chicago judge admonished him for missing a court hearing earlier in the week. The R&B superstar apologized to Cook County Judge Vincent Gaughan. The judge ordered Kelly to cancel a Jan. 13 concert to ensure he makes a Jan. 14 court date. Kelly missed a court appearance Wednesday because his tour bus was stopped for speeding in Utah on Tuesday.
December 17, 2007 |
R. Kelly has quite the reputation. The veteran Chicago-based R&B singer has earned as many headlines for allegations of having sex with a minor as he has for his consistently stellar music, which recently earned him two Grammy nods, including one for his innovative music-video saga "Trapped in the Closet." His repute as a powerhouse performer remains well warranted, as he demonstrated with an over-the-top, highly sexed, two-hour-set Friday night at the Forum.
December 12, 2007 |
Jasmyne Cannick and other black activists plan to station themselves across the street from the Forum on Friday to protest a concert that night by R. Kelly, the R&B superstar and celebrity defendant, but Cannick is already resigned to the fact that her picket line will be outnumbered by scalpers. "It's like pulling teeth to get people to talk about this," Cannick said. "It's a challenge to get the black community to even discuss it. . . .
August 17, 2007 |
NEW YORK -- R. Kelly's closet is getting bigger -- and more bizarre. The singer premiered the sequel to his twisted and craftily campy "Trapped in the Closet" video serial with a red-carpet extravaganza in New York on Wednesday night. Kelly's soap opera, which began in 2005, includes a gay pastor, cheating spouses, a convict named 'Twon and a well-endowed midget.
June 10, 2007 |
FOR R&B fans too modest to follow R. Kelly to the outer metaphorical orbits of his "Sex Planet," a charming new single by Jamaican-via-Miami singer Sean Kingston is making more wholesome inroads into the Top 40. The 17-year-old Kingston's "Beautiful Girls" is unlike anything else on the radio; a wide-eyed mix of throwback R&B, dancehall lilting and a bit of Phil Spector if he'd preferred a vocoder to firearms.
June 7, 2007 |
IT'S all about the numbers this week for embattled R&B star R. Kelly, who grabs the No. 1 slot on the nation's album sales chart with "Double Up," his sixth collection to reach the top spot. The two-CD set, which sold 386,000 copies in its first week in stores, charts the extremes of Kelly's impulses, from the comparatively chaste hit single "I'm a Flirt" to the crudely outrageous sci-fi allegory "Sex Planet" to his ballad in homage to the survivors of the Virginia Tech massacre, "Rise Up."