The mistruths of disgraced Chicago R&B singer and accused sexual predator R. Kelly are catching up to him.
Namely, one that’s recently enraged music fans in light of the tell-all Surviving R. Kelly docu-series and one of its most notorious subject matters: his marriage to R&B’s then-15-year-old beloved songstress, Aaliyah.
As revealed in the Lifetime documentary, Kelly’s former tour manager Demetrius Smith falsified the entire union, forging a faux marriage certificate between the two and listing Aaliyah’s age as 18. Newly surfacing court documents for the marriage’s annulment reportedly stated that Kelly was physically abusive toward the R&B princess as well. Still, Kelly’s been (somewhat) mum on the uproar surrounding the Surviving R. Kelly controversies, leaving his new lawyer, Steven Greenberg, to be his mouthpiece not only in legal court, but in the unrelenting court of public opinion. But one of Greenberg’s testimonies on Aaliyah in defense of the Pied Piper doesn’t quite match up with a 1994 video that fans recently dug up, and now there’s more holes in the story of R. Kelly and Baby Girl’s illicit matrimony than we thought.
But that Kelly was fully unaware of what her real age actually was. “He was married to her when she was 15,” Greenberg said. “Elvis [Presley] was married to Priscilla [Presley].” When reporter Linsey Davis pointed out that 15 is still not the age of legal consent, he claimed that “[his] understanding is that she did not claim to be 15, and in order to get married, she had to lie about her age.” He goes on to say that Kelly had “no idea” of this.
Kelly boasts about Aaliyah’s talent at such a young age, and specifically points out that she’s 14 (which was the time that the documentary was filmed). “Right now I’m producing a very talented lady—a young lady,” he says in the documentary. “She’s 14. Aaliyah. She’s real street, she just be chillin’.” The rest of the video shows Kelly coaching her in-studio on the creation of “Down With the Clique,” which the Chicago-native also wrote and produced for her.
Now, TMZ reports, Greenberg claims to have “misspoke” in the ABC interview and even said that he’s never actually spoke to Kelly about Aaliyah. “That was 20 years ago,” TMZ reports of his statement. “I didn’t know him 20 year ago, I didn’t represent him 20 years ago. And, I wasn’t invited to any wedding.”
…Alexa, play “Try Again” by Aaliyah.
(Photos from left: George McGinn/Getty Images, Evan Agostini/ImageDirect)