Shamed singer R. Kelly has been hit with many sexual assault accusations over the years, including allegations that he has been running a "sex cult" and "training" underaged girls. While these reports are nothing new, recent months have seen more allegations continue to pile up, and an explosive new report from BuzzFeed adds even more. While one woman says she had a controlling and abusive relationship with the star in the late '90s, another says her daughter is still a part of the cult that was previously reported.
Lizzette Martinez says her and Kelly's relationship started when she was a high school senior in 1995, and was rife with the kind of grooming and control tactics others have described. "It was very controlled: what I wore, how I spoke, who my friends were, who I could bring around,” she explained, also alleging she was pressured into performing certain sexual acts. "I did these things, and I felt like it was always—he was directing stuff. You know, it felt really weird. He was really overbearing… I’m like, 'I don't want to do that.' But he has a way with people, with women. He’s just so controlling, so abusive."
Martinez says she also suffered a miscarriage after getting pregnant for the star, and that he had been pressuring her to have an abortion. “I guess it was for the best. I didn’t want to go through that abortion," she said.
While Martinez ended her relationship with Kelly in 1999 and has since become a mother and a development coordinator for Benihana, another woman, Michelle, says her daughter (referred to as "N.") is still caught up with the singer. N.'s relationship with Kelly started when she was 17, according to her mother. Michelle called Olympia Fields Police in July 2009 to see if N. was at Kelly's home. When police arrived, another of Kelly's accusers, Jherdonda Pace, said both she and N. hid while Kelly refused the officers entry to his home. Police would later close the matter after they "found there to be no crime."
Despite Michelle's continued uneasiness about the whole arrangement, she says N. went on to become Kelly's assistant but always kept in contact. "That whole time when she left, she came home for Thanksgiving, she came home for Christmas, she came home for my birthday, she came home for Mother’s Day… She always came home and was always on my phone [plan], and any time I wanted to call her and talk to her, I could." Things would shift once N. moved to Atlanta with Kelly, and her phone was eventually swapped out for one Kelly would often answer, telling Michelle that N. was busy and could not come to to the phone. Michelle claims it's been three months since she last spoke to her daughter.
Read the full story here. Post-publication, Kelly's camp gave BuzzFeed a statement that denies the "many dark descriptions put forth by instigators and liars who have their own agenda for seeking profit and fame." It says families aiming to get their daughters to come home are "angling for a financial windfall" and that women who live with Kelly are, as BuzzFeed writes, "adults who can make their own choices, and that law enforcement wellness checks determined that the women were safe."