Singer R. Kelly has been charged in Minnesota with one count of prostitution with a person under 18 and one count of soliciting sex with a person under 18 for an incident that allegedly occurred with an underage girl at a concert in 2001.
The latest sex crimes charges against the R&B singer come as he faces 18 total counts of crimes in Chicago and New York involving women and girls over a span of 20 years. He remains in jail in New York after he was arrested by the NYPD in Chicago on federal sex trafficking charges last month; he was denied bail last week.
In the Minnesota case, which Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman said Monday evolved after a information gleaned from a Chicago tip line, the July 2001 incident involved an underage girl Kelly met in Minneapolis at a promotional event before a concert. After she asked Kelly for his autograph, he gave her his autograph and his phone number, telling her to call, Freeman said. When she did she was invited to the singer’s hotel, where she was eventually brought to Kelly’s room by an associate and offered $200 to take off her clothes and dance, which she did.
Freeman said in a news conference that sexual contact occurred but not intercourse, and that the girl was later given VIP seating for the concert. He said the alleged victim and her brother were interviewed before charges were filed.
Kelly’s lawyer Steve Greenberg on Twitter today called the latest charges “beyond absurd.”
Years of allegations against Kelly preceded the broadcast last winter of Lifetime documentary series Surviving R. Kelly, which brought new accusations to light.