R. Kelly Breaks Silence on Sexual Abuse Claims in Wild Interview With Gayle King (VIDEO)
At the beginning of the year, artist R. Kelly was the subject of Lifetime's six-part docuseries Surviving R. Kelly, in which several women alleged he had sexually abused them. Since the release of the series, Kelly was charged with sexual abuse and briefly jailed for it, and he's now broken his silence.
The singer spoke out Wednesday morning in an explosive interview with CBS This Morning's Gayle King. Kicking off the discussion, King admitted she was surprised Kelly agreed to sit down with her. He quickly answered, "I'm very tired of all of the lies. I've been hearing things, and you know, and seeing things on the blogs, and you know, you know, I'm just tired"
The interview started out with a calm back-and-forth between the pair but eventually devolved into an outburst of emotion on Kelly's part.
"What are the lies that you're hearing that disturb you most?" King began.
"Oh my God. Um — all of them, got little girls trapped in the basement… helicopters over my house trying to rescue someone that doesn't need rescuing because they're not in my house," Kelly responded. "Handcuffing people, starving people. I have a harem, what you call it — a cult. I don't even really know what a cult is. But I know I don't have one."
Throughout the interview, Kelly continued to insist that the alleged victims are lying, and when King noted that Surviving R. Kelly's creators interviewed more than 50 people who all told similar stories, he didn't waver.
"Are you saying everybody in that documentary was not telling the truth about you? Everybody?" King asked.
"Everybody says something bad about me. Nobody said nothin' good," Kelly responded. "They was describing Lucifer. I'm not Lucifer. I'm a man. I make mistakes, but I'm not a devil, and by no means am I a monster."
After asking why these women would all tell similar stories, Kelly blamed social media and the way that it influences our world today. He also maintained that these women were spewing lies.
"So they're lying on you? That's your explanation? They're lying on you?" King followed up.
"Absolutely. Absolutely. Absolutely," he stated. "I have been assassinated. I have been buried alive. But I'm alive."
When King brought up the claims he had held women against their will, he shot back, "I don't need to. Why would I? How stupid would it be for R. Kelly, with all I've been through in my way way past, to hold somebody, let alone 4, 5, 6, 50, you said — why — how stupid would I be to do that?!"
This track of questioning eventually led to Kelly's big outburst in which he was brought to his feet while King remained calmly seated. "Stop it. You all quit playing! Quit playing! I didn't do this stuff! This is not me! I'm fighting for my f***ing life! Y'all killing me with this sh*t!" he shouted. "I gave you 30 years of my f***ing career!"
The conversation eventually toned down, and you can see the full interview below.
Of course, viewers had plenty to say about his first TV appearance after these latest claims. Scroll down to see some of the reactions.
— Oprah Winfrey (@Oprah) March 6, 2019
Me watching this R Kelly interview this morning pic.twitter.com/tIaH2QQCsD
— lance (@acecurley_01) March 6, 2019
May God grant me Gayle King's composure in my next life. She did not flinch.
I would have been 10ft in the air & out the door when R. Kelly stood up.
Also the publicist must be cursing himself for letting him go on air. pic.twitter.com/vQJQQlTZxs
— Tugen Girl (@tugengirl) March 6, 2019
Gayle: " Did you ever have sex with anyone under the age of 17"
R. Kelly: pic.twitter.com/t3RNEiSsAY
— Verture.Ent (@IMMEND_Patreon) March 6, 2019
Chicago SVU watching R. Kelly crying to Gayle pic.twitter.com/j9e9KAzzhe
— King Of No Nation (@Terrion91) March 6, 2019
And it isn't the end for R. Kelly's story, as it was revealed that King will be speaking with Joycelyn Savage and Azriel Clary in another interview on Thursday. The women are Kelly's "live-in girlfriends" — though their estranged families claimed in Surviving R. Kelly that they're victims of Kelly's abuse that have been brainwashed by the star — and a snippet of the interview can be seen in the video below.
WATCH: @GayleKing spoke to Joycelyn Savage and Azriel Clary about living with R. Kelly and their estranged relationship with their families. It made them very emotional.
— CBS This Morning (@CBSThisMorning) March 6, 2019