Fallout continues for R. Kelly after a Brooklyn jury found the disgraced R&B singer guilty on Sept. 27 of sex trafficking.
WAFT reports that Louisiana State Rep. C. Denise Marcelle rescinded the Baton Rouge “key to the city” that she presented to Kelly in 2013, at a time when allegations of Kelly’s abuse of girls and young women hadn’t yet been made public.
A spokesperson in Marcelle’s office said the lawmaker believes “the focus should be on the victims.”
Kelly was found guilty on all nine counts of racketeering and sex trafficking in the high-profile case, which featured hours of graphic testimony from several of the singer’s accusers and eyewitnesses to his illicit behavior.
According to the BBC, allegations of sexual abuse and predatory behavior against Kelly targeting underaged girls dates back to the 1990s.
After the verdict, celebrity attorney and women’s rights advocate Gloria Allred described Kelly as “the worst” sexual predator she’s seen in her 47-year legal career.
Marcelle was an East Baton Rouge Metro Council member when she presented Kelly with the keys to the city back in the day at his 2013 Valentine’s Day concert in Baton Rouge.
A WAFB investigation at the time revealed that Marcelle spent public funds for the plaque that honored Kelly.
“Again, the reason I chose to do that is because he’s a great artist,” Marcelle said, defending her actions as an “allowable expense” in the context of economic development for the city.
According to The Advocate, Marcelle spent $195.45 on the gift, which she said at the time was a small expense compared to the profits Kelly’s concert delivered for local businesses.
(Photo by Scott Legato/Getty Images)