“Our office is committed to using every tool we have to find child predators and bring them to justice.” said General Landry. “We will continue to do all that we can to protect our State’s children.”
General Landry’s CCU has investigated thousands of computer crimes that have victimized children from infants to 16 years of age. To report child exploitation, call the Louisiana Bureau of Investigation at 800-256-4506.
SCOTT OLSON/GETTY IMAGES
R. Kelly might now seem like a man of the past, with “I Believe I Can Fly” and “Trapped in the Closet” now more like novelties than anything, but he has also been a figure long shrouded in sexual abuse allegations, largely involving underage women.
In an explosive Buzzfeed investigation, posted early Monday, reporter Jim DeRogatis, who has been on the R. Kelly beat for 20 years and broke the story surrounding his 2008 child pornography case involving a 14-year-old girl, claims the singer has been holding women against their will for years in an abusive sex “cult” and “brainwashing” them.
Parents of several of the teenaged women who are involved in the cult, along with three women who were formerly members, came forward to DeRogatis in an effort to expose Kelly’s actions, suggesting he has been holding them “prisoner” in his home, even swapping their personal cell phones for ones with only his number.
They claim Kelly allegedly meets young women who are aspiring singers looking for advice and guidance in the music industry. He invites them backstage or even flies them to his homes in either Georgia or Chicago under the guise of providing mentorship, then engages them in a sexual relationship, before inviting them to live in either property’s guesthouse where they then must live by a set of strict rules.
Those rules include referring to him as “daddy,” being filmed during all sexual activity, which Kelly shows his friends, wearing loose and conservative clothing and turning to face the wall when male visitors are present, not leaving the house without permission, not contacting their families, etc.
If any of these rules are violated, the women are allegedly “punished” verbally and physically. One of the women who was previously a part of the cult said, “You have to ask for food. You have to ask to go use the bathroom. … He is a master at mind control. … He is a puppet master.”
Former member Asante McGee claimed there are currently six women living in properties rented by Kelly, who controls “every aspect of their lives: dictating what they eat, how they dress, when they bathe, when they sleep, and how they engage in sexual encounters that he records.”
Kitti Jones, another woman who left the cult, said, in spring 2013, he allegedly “held her against a tree and slapped her outside of a Subway sandwich shop…because she had been too friendly with the male cashier there.”
Because all of the women who are allegedly involved in the cult are of legal consenting age and not “missing persons,” the police has been unable to help parents who have been desperately trying to bring their daughters home, although some have since opened an investigation with the FBI.
The parents of one woman said their daughter dropped out of college to live with Kelly, and they haven’t seen her since December 2016: “It was as if she was brainwashed. [She] looked like a prisoner — it was horrible. I hugged her and hugged her. But she just kept saying she’s in love and [Kelly] is the one who cares for her. I don’t know what to do. I hope that if I get her back, I can get her treatment for victims of cults. They can reprogram her. But I wish I could have stopped it from happening.”
Several of the parents who have been able to reach their daughters, through either a text or random phone call, have said they always claim to be in a safe and consenting relationship with Kelly and of their own free will.
Kelly’s lawyer, Linda Mensch, responded to Buzzfeed’s investigation: “We can only wonder why folks would persist in defaming a great artist who loves his fans, works 24/7, and takes care of all of the people in his life. He works hard to become the best person and artist he can be. It is interesting that stories and tales debunked many years ago turn up when his goal is to stop the violence; put down the guns; and embrace peace and live. I suppose that is the price of fame. Like all of us, Mr. Kelly deserves a personal life. Please respect that.”
But Kelly is no stranger to accusations of this nature. In 1994, he made headlines when he married a then 15-year-old Aaliyah, later writing and producing her album Age Ain’t Nothing But A Number. And in 2008, he was cleared of 14 counts of videotaping himself having sex with a 14-year-old girl.
In a GQ profile later, Kelly said he had also provided financial settlements (along with non-disclosure agreements) out of court to several others who had accused him of participating in underage sex.
According to the release, Bailey committed sexual misconduct with a child under the age of 13 in 2013, eventually leading to his arrest in March of this year. He was also charged with Endangering the Welfare of a Child.
Bailey is being held in the Livingston County Jail without bail and will next be in court for sentencing on September 28.
Natalie Neysa Alund , USA TODAY NETWORK – Tennessee
A Nashville man will spend the next 35 years in prison in connection to a child pornography conviction, federal prosecutors announced Monday.
Mark K. White, 64, was handed down the sentence Friday by United States District Court Judge Aleta Trauger, for production of child pornography and possession of child pornography, announced Jack Smith, Acting United States Attorney for the Middle District of Tennessee.
White was charged in July 2013 after an investigation determined that while visiting a family in Lawrenceburg, Tenn., White had sexually molested and recorded sexually explicit images of young girls, between the ages of 4 and 7 years old.
Subsequent examinations of White’s phone and computer revealed that he collected more than 400 images of child pornography, which included images of at least 18 victims known from other investigations. Investigators also found evidence that revealed White’s sexual abuse of young girls dated back to 2011.
White pleaded guilty to the charges in January 2016, admitting that he had recorded the sexually explicit images of the young girls.
This case was investigated by the Lawrenceburg Police Department, the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation and the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
PRINCETON - A local man facing charges including first-degree sexual assault and sexual abuse by a custodian waived his time limit Monday for a preliminary hearing in Mercer County Magistrate Court.
Jonathan M. Seal, 23, of Princeton was arrested July 12 and charged with felonies including sexual abuse by a custodian, first-degree sexual assault, and child abuse resulting in injury. The case involved a 3-year-old child.
The case started in early June when Detective K.L. Adams, working with the Mercer County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office, was informed of the alleged abuse of a 3-year-old child. Adams said in his report that he was given photographs of the child’s injuries. A SANE nurse examined the child, and the cause of the injuries was listed as possible sexual abuse, Adams said in his report.
Seal was scheduled for a hearing before Magistrate Sandra Dorsey. People who are jailed are entitled to a preliminary hearing within 10 days of their arrest unless they waive the time limit or waive the hearing entirely. Seal chose to waive the time limit Monday, Special Prosecutor Holly Flanigan said.
Seal is being held at the Southern Regional Jail in Beaver on a $100,000 cash-only bond, Flanigan said.
Authorities late Sunday night released the name of a man gunned down hours earlier in possible retaliation for alleged sex abuse of a young girl.
The shooting happened about 3:15 p.m. Sunday. The city's West Precinct officers responded to the 1100 block of 15th Street West on a report of someone shot. When they arrived on the scene, they found Hawkins in the alley lying on ground suffering from a gunshot wound.
Birmingham Fire and Rescue Service pronounced him dead on the scene.
Police spokesman Lt. Sean Edwards said detectives learned the shooting followed allegations that Hawkins sexually assaulted his girlfriend's 13-year-old daughter. "Apparently, the daughter told some family members and they retaliated,'' Edwards said.
Investigators believe the shooter is a family member of the teen girl. As of 11:30 p.m. Sunday, no one had been arrested in connection with Hawkins' slaying.
Edwards said Hawkins lived with the 13-year-old's mother. Police, he said, are looking into the sexual assault allegations, and said Sunday afternoon they had not yet been confirmed.
Sometimes, Edwards said, allegations can be misleading or even false. "What if this was some fabrication?" Edwards said. "And now you have someone who is deceased."
"It is our recommendation that family members do not take justice into their own hands but allow the police to do what they are trained to do,'' he said. "Street justice is never the answer."
Hawkins in Birmingham's 54th homicide this year. Of those, at least five have been ruled justifiable and therefore aren't deemed criminal. In all of Jefferson County, there have been 83 homicides in 2017.
Anyone with information in Hawkins' death is asked to call Birmingham homicide detectives at 205-254-1764 or Crime Stoppers at 205-254-7777.