Rasha Ali, USA TODAY
Published 10:12 a.m. ET Dec. 5, 2019
Judge sets Sept. 14 trial date for R. Kelly’s state trial; Kid Rock’s Detroit eatery closing after his profane comments; more. (Dec. 5)
One of R. Kelly’s live-in girlfriends, Joycelyn Savage, is denying that she is behind the online account that accused the jailed R&B singer of abuse.
In a video shared by TMZ on Wednesday, Savage asked people not to believe what they see on social media.
“Please do not believe what you see and hear on social media. That is not my Instagram. Someone is impersonating me,” Savage said. “I’m not even that kind of girl that would do something like that and betray him. I’ve been through so much with him and we have a bond that is so special that no one ever can break.”
Savage and his other live-in girlfriend Azriel Clary have supported Kelly through his recent legal troubles, which include more than a dozen charges across various states. In March, the women defended the singer in an interview with CBS’ Gayle King.
Last week, the site Patreon closed an account that was attributed to Savage after it was suspected that someone was impersonating her.
“After multiple unsuccessful attempts to verify the identity of the account holder, we closed the Patreon page allegedly associated with Joycelyn Savage due to potential impersonation,” Patreon said in a statement sent to USA TODAY by spokesperson Katie Uhlman. “All patrons who signed up for the membership page were refunded and the creator did not receive any funds.”
Following Savage’s video message to TMZ Wednesday, her family released a statement through their lawyer, Gerald A. Griggs, saying that they’re disappointed to find out that their daughter was not behind the account.
“We deeply desired to hear her story and in her own voice outside of the presence of Robert Sylvester Kelly or anyone associated with him,” the family said in the statement. “For nearly three years, Joycelyn Savage has not been able to speak outside of a controlled environment created by Mr. Kelly. Her video today was not any different. Although we can now verify that it wasn’t her account, the allegations still remain.”
R. Kelly girlfriend Joycelyn Savage’s alleged Patreon account closed, possible ‘impersonation’
One of Kelly’s lawyers, Nicole Blank Becker, stood by Savage’s latest statement.
“The stories told about Mr. R. Kelly that were released via Patreon, day after day, were initially believed by the public to be true. Meanwhile, the fictitious stories were placed on a public platform to shape public opinion,” Becker said. “Just because someone says something, claims something and/or gets money for it, doesn’t mean it’s true.”
Kelly, whose real name is Robert Sylvester Kelly, is facing 18 state and federal sex-crime charges in three states and is now locked up in a federal detention facility in Chicago awaiting his first trial.
Over the last two decades, but especially this year, scores of women have accused Kelly of sexual abuse, sex-trafficking and underage sex, including in a damaging film series that aired on cable TV, “Surviving R. Kelly.”
Kelly has denied all wrongdoing and has pleaded not guilty to all the charges against him.
Contributing: Maria Puente, Hannah Yasharoff
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