Over twenty years ago, the infamous video of R. Kelly allegedly urinating on and sexually abusing a 14-year-old girl was first leaked to the Chicago Sun-Times.
Although the now-disgraced R&B artist was later put on trial for the video, he was found “not guilty,” a verdict which allowed him to continue his abuse of young women and girls for decades.
Now, less than a year after he was finally convicted for other his abuses, the alleged victim in the video may finally see justice.
On Monday, Kelly is expected to stand trial for allegedly recording the infamous tape in his hometown of Chicago, according to Yahoo News.
Kelly is facing 13 counts – including producing sexually explicit images of the girl in the original video, as well as two other un-named minors in separate videos.
Unlike in his original 2008 trial, Kelly’s alleged victim from tape is expected to testify to the fact that she was the girl in the video – and that she faced pressure from Kelly to deny it was her in the original trial.
Kelly won’t be the only one on trial this time. Derrel McDavid, who was Kelly’s business manager from 1991, is accused of conspiring to cover up Kelly’s alleged abuse of the girls in the video.
And, Milton Brown, a former employee of Kelly’s, is accused of conspiracy to receive child pornography.
All three men have pleaded not guilty, according to Yahoo News. But, the fact that those around Kelly are facing legal action matters.
As the documentary, which eventually led to his downfall, Surviving R. Kelly, made crystal clear, for decades people around Kelly and in the media enabled his behavior by either ignoring his actions or out-right calling the women who accused him, liars.
Hell, the man won an NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Song in 2013, over a decade after the tape was leaked.
It’s hard to argue that had Kelly been called out earlier, things might have been different for his victims, one of whom said that she met Kelly outside of his 2008 trial.
Regardless of the outcome of this Chicago trial, Kelly likely won’t be getting out anytime soon. In June, a judge sentenced Kelly to 30 years in prison.
But, this could be a chance to catch at least a tiny fraction of the people purported to have enabled Kelly’s abuses for years. And it could also be a chance for the girl at the center of this nightmare to finally get justice.