And it begins..before court is even in session.
It's day 4 of R. Kelly's racketeering and Azriel Clary testified that R. Kelly sexually abused her on his tour bus and in hotel rooms when she was still a high school student and an aspiring singer.
Azriel, also known as Jane Doe #5, claimed that she contracted herpes after having sex with Kelly. She said he hadn’t disclosed he had a sexually transmitted disease.
“This man purposely gave me something he knew he had,” she said. “He could have controlled the situation.”
The prosecution repeatedly asked Azriel how old she was when the abuse took place in 2015. “I was 17 years old,” she responded each time.
Last week, a jury heard similar testimony from Jerhonda Pace (Jane Doe #4), who described being a 16-year-old virgin when Kelly began sexually exploiting her in 2010. Both Azriel and Jerhonda claimed they were forced to call him “Daddy” and follow his draconian rules restricting how they could dress, who they could speak with and when they could use the bathroom.
R. Kelly is 54 and has denied accusations that he preyed on several alleged victims over the course of his successful, hit-making 30 year career. Kelly has denied the accusations with his lawyers calling the accusers groupies who wanted to take advantage of his fame.
Azriel, now 23, said on the stand she met Kelly while he was performing on his “Black Panties” tour. She told him she was an aspiring performer and lied about her age, saying she was 18.
At one point at the concert, he gave her a pair of 'Black girls' undergarments', an odd gesture that seemingly fits the title of his tour. She testified she had no romantic interest in Kelly.
“I just wanted to sing. I genuinely wanted his input.”
Azriel elaborates and says R. Kelly offered her an audition but said he needed to ejaculate before it would happen, she said. They were soon regularly having sex, with Kelly nearly always videotaping the encounters.
When she finally revealed she was underage, Kelly slapped her across the face but kept her in his life, she said. The jury was shown notes she wrote to herself about how to stay in line with his rules when she was around him.
“Tell Daddy everything,” she had written.
..this trial is going to get messier with each coming day. I'll keep you posted. There's more that went down today, I'll give you the 411 via video. Until then, sign in and sound off on your thoughts of how the trial is moving along thus far. Don't forget to keep it sticky + real..talk to you soon! (Get caught up below!)