R. Kelly victim Faith Rodgers, who recently testified against the singer at his New York trial, spoke out on Friday (October 8) about the abuse she suffered at the hands of the Grammy-winner musician.
Addressing reporters at a news conference with attorney Gloria Allred, Rodgers described how she had been “manipulated,” “sexually abused and “threatened” by R Kelly, who was convicted of sex trafficking last month.
“After meeting R. Kelly at 19 years old, for that year and a half, he manipulated me for his own enjoyment and sexually abused me and tried to control me. When I made the choice to come forward with my story he threatened me on multiple occasions that if I continue to go forward with the telling of my truth, he will publish nude pictures and videos of me … Despite the threats, I continued to tell what happened to me and as a result, R. Kelly retaliated against me and published those photos,” Rodgers told reporters.
“So, the stress of it all, of course, it caused me anxiety, all types of medical problems. I’m in a much better space now, but through it, in that moment. I didn’t know if I was going to make it through or how I was going to redeem myself from all this,” she added.
R. Kelly was convicted by a federal jury in September in his sex trafficking trial, where prosecutors accused the singer of exploiting his stardom over a quarter-century to lure women and underage girls into his orbit for sex.
Kelly’s music has largely disappeared from radio and some streaming platforms. His hit record “I Believe I Can Fly” was for years a popular choice at graduation ceremonies.
(Production: Alan Devall, Omar Younis)