A woman who sued R. Kelly alleging he knowingly infected her with herpes and locked her in rooms for punishment said she has been threatened with retaliation by the singer.
Speaking just weeks after she was featured in a documentary series where numerous women alleged sexual, physical and mental abuse by Kelly, Faith Rodgers and attorney Gloria Allred claimed the singer sent Rodgers a letter threatening to "reveal what he alleges are details of her sex life" in response to the lawsuit.
In a press conference held in New York City Monday, 21-year-old Rodgers said "taking a stand against R. Kelly, someone who has been termed 'the King of R&B' and is loved by many, has not been easy.”
U.S. & World
The day's top national and international news.
"I trusted him and he betrayed my trust," she said, joining her mother in calling for other potential victims to come forward. "No woman should be criticized, shamed or retaliated against for speaking the truth. I was vulnerable and impressionable when I met him at 19."
In her lawsuit, which Allred said is pending in New York Supreme Court, Rodgers said she met Kelly in 2017 after a concert in San Antonio, Texas, sparking a relationship where Kelly "mentally, sexually and verbally" abused her. At the time the suit was filed, Kelly's management declined to comment.
Allred made public Monday a letter Kelly sent to Lydia Hills, an attorney for Rodgers, in which the singer warned that if her client "persists in court action she will be subjected to public opinion during the discovery process. For example, my law team is prepared to request the production of the medical test results proving the origin of her STD claim, as well as 10 personal male witnesses testifying under oath about her sex life in support of her claim and complete records of her text/face time message exchanges..."
He continued, "If Ms. Rodgers really cares about her own reputation she should cease her participation and association with the organizers of this negative campaign. Counter actions are in the developmental stages and due to be released soon."
Faith’s mother, Kelly Rodgers, says since the suit was filed, she and her husband have received threatening phone calls and text messages.
“It is very upsetting to see R. Kelly’s arrogant and defiant attitude towards the victims that have come forward against him,” Kelly Rodgers said.
Faith Rodgers had previously said Kelly instructed her to call him "daddy" and told her his goal was to teach her how to have sex like a "mature woman."
The lawsuit says Kelly "disregarded specific statements made by plaintiff that she was 'not ready to have sex'" with him.
Allred says she and Faith Rodgers have an appointment with the NYPD, who have asked to meet "in furtherance of their investigation into potential victims of R. Kelly."
"Mr. Kelly, you may soon join the ranks of Bill Cosby and Harvey Weinstein," Allred said in the press conference. "Just as they have been held accountable, so will you."
Faith Rodgers said if she could say anything to Kelly right now, her response would simply be "time's up."
Kelly has been under fire since the recent airing of the Lifetime docuseries "Surviving R. Kelly." He has denied all allegations of sexual misconduct involving women and underage girls.
Illinois officials say a concert in Springfield that was to be hosted by R. Kelly cannot take place in the wake of the new sexual misconduct allegations against the R&B star.
Illinois Department of Agriculture spokeswoman Denise Albert told the Chicago Tribune that the application for the Spring Break Jam in April was denied Thursday because of security concerns following protests outside Kelly's Chicago studio this week.
Lamont Watts, CEO of the local radio station 95.1 “Clubsteppin,” says that his station will no longer play the singer’s music.
A tip that Kelly was holding two women against their will prompted Chicago police to visit his residence Friday in Chicago's Trump Tower. Officers interviewed Kelly and the women but found no evidence of wrongdoing.