Attorney Gloria Allred held a press conference on Monday along with Faith Rogers, claiming that R. Kelly is retaliating against Rogers in response to allegations that he abused her. Rogers filed a lawsuit against the R&B singer in 2018, claiming that during a relationship that started when she was 19, he engaged in sexual battery and gave her a sexually transmitted disease after failing to disclose that he had one. Rogers also claimed that during her relationship with Kelly, he engaged in abusive behavior that included locking her up for hours and making her call him “Daddy.”
Kelly has denied all allegations of wrongdoing.
This alleged retaliation includes a Facebook page called “Surviving Lies,” that Allred said posted images of Rogers after the Lifetime documentary miniseries Surviving R. Kelly aired earlier this month (the page was quickly taken down). Those same images had previously been sent to Rogers after she filed her lawsuit against him, with a threat of releasing them to the public. Allred said the Facebook page is believed to have been started by someone on Kelly’s team.
Allred stated that this isn’t the only way in which Kelly is retaliating against allegations against him pointing out that Kelly threatened to sue Lifetime before the network aired the miniseries which focuses on his alleged abuses. Allred said Kelly also threatened to sue individuals involved with the miniseries.
“It seems that Mr. Kelly is taking his playbook from Donald Trump, who threatened to sue the women who came forward during the campaign to speak about his behavior towards them,” Allred said. Allred once represented one of those women, Summer Zervos, who has an ongoing defamation lawsuit against Trump, who said she made up allegations against him.
“All of these attempts to intimidate and threaten our clients will not work,” Allred declared.
Rogers said she is “much wiser and much stronger” than the 19-year-old she was when she first met R. Kelly. In a message to other women, she said, “There’s absolutely no excuse for abuse and no one deserves to be afraid.”
Rogers’ mother Kelly Rogers was also present at the press conference. She said that she and her husband have “received threats in the media and threatening phone calls and messages” since Faith came forward. Still, she said, “We will not back down.”
Kelly Rogers also encouraged any other victim to come forward.
“You are not alone and your voice matters,” she said. “Together, we are stronger.”
Michelle Kramer, whose daughter Dominique Gardner was also allegedly a victim of Kelly for years, was present Monday as well. She had a simple statement directed towards R. Kelly.
“As a mother, I have a message for him,” Kramer said, “if you attempt to bully … our daughters for speaking their truths, we will take appropriate actions against you.”
The Lifetime miniseries came after a 2017 BuzzFeed News report that discussed how Kelly had a number of women living in unusual conditions at his properties. At the time of that article, the allegations against Kelly did not appear to include criminal activity, as they only involved adult women, without any physical abuse.
Allred acknowledged that Rogers was an adult at the time the alleged acts involving her client, but because Rogers is claiming abuse, it doesn’t matter that she was an adult. Additionally, Allred said, “Not everyone who’s made allegations against Mr. Kelly were adults at the time they allege that he abused them.”
Allred said that investigators with the New York Police Department are also planning on speaking with Rogers about her allegations.
“Mr. Kelly, you may soon join the ranks of Bill Cosby and Harvey Weistein,” Allred said. “Just as they have been and are being held accountable for their actions, you also must be accountable.”
[Image via Circa screengrab]