Two of R. Kelly’s alleged victims spoke to the “Today” show’s Megyn Kelly on Tuesday about the abuse they suffered while living with him and the ways he controlled their lives.
Kitti Jones and Asante McGee, who previously spoke with BuzzFeed and Rolling Stone, claim Kelly dictated everything from what they wore to what they ate. They are among a wave of young women who have accused him of sexual misconduct and coercion over nearly two decades, per msn.com.
R. Kelly, who denies wrongdoing, has come under particular scrutiny in the era of #MeToo and the #muterkellymovement seeks to put a permanent end to his career.
Jones, a former DJ who quit her job to be with the singer, wrote a book in which she detailed her time with him. She says she spent two years in Kelly’s Chicago home, and that’s where Jones endured physical abuse and emotional manipulation.
“I had to wear sweatpants, I had to stand up when he would walk in a room,” Jones told Megyn Kelly, adding that she had to ask permission to use the bathroom and lost about 20 pounds because R. Kelly controlled what and when she ate.
McGee also said that the women who live with the singer are required to call him “Daddy.”
If you didn’t “you’d get in trouble,” McGee said.
R. Kelly has been accused of everything from child pornography — after the circulation of a videotape appeared to show him having sex with and urinating on a teenage girl — to running a sex cult.
Despite the flurry of accusations against him by his mostly black accusers, Kelly’s career has never slowed down.
In the meantime, Shonda Rhimes and Oscar-nominated director Ava DuVernay have joined the growing #MuteRKelly movement, calling for more investigations into his alleged sick sexual behavior.
In a statement sent to NBC News last week, R. Kelly’s management said in part, “We understand criticizing a famous artist is a good way to draw attention to those goals — and in this case, it is unjust and off-target.”
“We will vigorously resist this attempted public lynching of a black man who has made extraordinary contributions to our culture,” the artist’s management went on to say.
Asked to respond to the suggestion that movement against R. Kelly was a “public lynching,” Asante McGee said: “That’s bullc—.”