Three of the women who have accused R. Kelly of abuse are now speaking out following his unhinged Gayle King interview, during which the singer had multiple emotional outbursts and at one point approached King with his arms flailing. The accusers say his behavior was reminiscent of the alleged abusive rage they experienced firsthand with him. “When he started screaming, it terrified me,” Asante McGee, one of his accusers, tells CBS. “I immediately turned off the TV because I felt like I was revisiting him yelling at me.” She believes he shed crocodile tears in order to appear the victim and gain sympathy: “I know he would cry at the drop of a dime. He’s a great performer, on and off the stage.” Michelle Kramer, who believes her daughter was abused by Kelly for a decade, says she couldn’t watch the “circus act” but that her daughter almost threw the remote at the TV. “Everything he said when he jumped up, she said she remembered the rage,” Kramer says. “When she wouldn’t do what he asked or he’d get upset about something … it was a punishment.”
Kelly denied all allegations of abuse during the interview. Kittie Jones, another accuser who says he physically abused her throughout their relationship, says he’s misinformed: “He thinks in his mind that we’ve all conspired against him to take him down, and the truth is, it just became a domino effect.” Jones says she cried watching the interview because she “still saw the person that I fell in love with and I couldn’t help but wonder why didn’t someone step in and help him earlier?”
The parents of Joycelyn Savage, one of the two women living with Kelly who defended him in her own separate interview with King and accused her parents of extortion, say they want Kelly to “rot in jail.” They have long maintained that Kelly has brainwashed their daughter and is holding her hostage, which Savage and Kelly both deny. “How can you be raving on TV that you want to see your kids, but you won’t allow me to see my own daughter?” her father says. He denies Kelly’s claims that he “sold” his daughter to Kelly, saying he’s never met the singer and has never received or requested any money from him. The Savages have not seen Joycelyn in two years, and Joycelyn’s mother refers to the rare calls they’ve had as “prison calls” because they feel “scripted” and like someone’s listening. Dominique Kramer, one of the women who says she was abused by Kelly and stayed with him at the same time as Savage and Azriel Clary, tells CBS that Kelly would have them “rehearse” what to say to their families.
Kelly remains in Cook County jail as of Friday for failing to pay child support; his manager tells King that he expects Kelly to be released later today.