Today, Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx announced that her office is dropping counts of aggravated criminal sexual assault and aggravated criminal sexual abuse charges against Robert Kelly involving four victims. Since this office filed these charges in 2019, Kelly has been charged in New York and Illinois Federal Courts. After a six-week trial, Kelly was convicted by a federal jury in Brooklyn of all nine counts of racketeering predicated on criminal conduct, including sexual exploitation of children, forced labor, and Mann Act violations (sex trafficking) involving the coercion and transportation of women and girls in interstate commerce to engage in illegal sexual activity. The evidence at that trial included the testimony of over 45 witnesses, including ten victims.
The New York Court sentenced Kelly to 30 years in prison on June 29, 2022. In the Illinois federal court, in September of 2022, R. Kelly was found guilty on three counts of child pornography and three counts of child enticement. However, a sentence has not yet been rendered from the Illinois court. Kelly faces a minimum of 10 to 90 years in prison in the Illinois federal court.
In 2018, the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office took unprecedented steps in a public call for victims and witnesses in response to the Surviving R. Kelly documentary and the severe allegations the series exposed. The CCSAO established a hotline and received numerous calls and tips. CCSAO staff interviewed hundreds of witnesses in Chicago, Atlanta, and New York during its investigation. The New York and Illinois Federal cases were completed with assistance from CCSAO staff and its extensive investigation, as noted by Jacquelyn M. Kasulis, Acting United States Attorney for the Eastern District of New York in a statement.
“I understand how hard it was for these victims to come forward and tell their stories. I applaud their courage and have the utmost respect for everyone who came forward,” said State’s Attorney Foxx. “While this may not be the result they were expecting, due to the sentences that Mr. Kelly is facing, we do feel that justice has been served. My office will direct our resources to find justice for other victims of sexual abuse who do not have the power of a documentary to bring their abusers to light.”
The CCSAO’s Sexual Assault and Domestic Violence (SADV) Division is committed to prosecuting crimes against sex offenders and domestic violence abusers. The SADV Division helps the most vulnerable survivors of any age to engage in the criminal process in the least traumatic and most sensitive manner possible. The SADV Division seeks justice for survivors on a case-by-case basis, taking into account every survivor’s individual needs and unique circumstances while endeavoring to protect the public from abusers and predators.