R. Kelly is acquitted of Child Porn Charges after child witness fails to testify

Mr. Kelly had been accused of making a 27-minute sex tape with an under-age female. But a high-powered defense team convinced the jury of nine men and three women that the identity of the girl was not conclusive.

As the verdicts were being read on Friday, the singer started crying and whispering “Thank you Jesus, thank you Jesus, thank you Jesus,” over and over again, his lawyers said.

Mr. Kelly, 41, whose signature song is “I Believe I Can Fly,” saluted a crowd of his fans as he left court and then put his hand on his heart. He made no remarks, but the impassive face he had worn during the four-week trial showed a flicker of a smile.

In the same courtroom where the trial was conducted, five jurors told reporters that the absence of testimony from the alleged victim was a big handicap. “All of us felt the grayness of the case,” one juror said.

 As outlined in the prosecution’s opening and closing statements, the case was intended to be clear-cut: the “sweet, nice, lovely” victim was introduced to Mr. Kelly at the age of 12 by her aunt, a protégé of Mr. Kelly’s named Stephanie Edwards. But instead of making the girl a star, Mr. Kelly preyed on her, made her do “vile, disgusting” things and filmed them. Since Mr. Kelly knew she was under age, the state said, he was guilty of making child pornography.
The big question remains how a 12 year old was introduced to an adult male she was not familiar with.  the Parents could lose their child under the juvenile dependency court.  they would be charged with a petition for  negligence under welfare and institutions code section 300 for failure to protect their child.

Expert witnesses for the prosecution said that the VHS tape, whose origin is unknown, was a multigeneration copy but had not been tampered with. Prosecutors also pointed out how the man on the tape turned his back briefly to the camera. It was less than a quarter of a second, but enough time to see a mole on his back — just like the one Mr. Kelly has.

While 14 witnesses for the prosecution identified the girl in the tape, and some identified Mr. Kelly as well, only one tied them together in a sexual relationship. That was Lisa Van Allen, who testified that she had a three-way sexual encounter with them.

Ms. Van Allen, who received state and federal immunity to testify, did not appear to be an unimpeachable witness. She told the court that she had first had sex with Mr. Kelly at age 17, immediately after being introduced to him on the set of one of his videos, and admitted that she stole a $20,000 Rolex from him. Her current boyfriend and a former boyfriend are both felons.

The defense team called her a liar and extortionist and compared her, literally, to Satan.

Mr. Kelly’s lawyers, who included Edward Genson, Sam Adam and his son, Sam Adam Jr., filed so many motions that they helped delay the start of the trial for six years. But once in court, the lawyers adopted a minimalist approach, limiting their side of the story to two days. Mr. Kelly did not testify.

Photo

kelly190

R. Kelly after the verdict. CreditJohn Gress/Reuters

Interestingly in Juvenile Dependency cases under welfare and institutions code section 300 et sic.  Their only needs to be a preponderance of the evidence to terminate parental rights and substantiate a petition for failure to protect a minor child.

“Child pornography cases can be extremely difficult in many ways,” said Cook County State’s Attorney Richard Devine, noting that the victims often do not consider themselves victims. “If we receive similar evidence today or tomorrow, we are going to bring that case.”