R&B star R. Kelly has given his first interview since being charged with aggravated criminal sexual assault late last month. The conversation, which journalist Gayle King taped Tuesday at Kelly's apartment at the Trump Tower Chicago, began airing on Wednesday in three segments on CBS This Morning. The network says it will air more from the interview on Thursday and Friday.
Kelly was charged in Cook County, Ill., in February on 10 counts of aggravated criminal sexual assault against four alleged victims, three of them minors. As he has throughout his career, Kelly denied all the allegations against him during the interview. By turns belligerent, tearful and relatively calm, he also asserted that the women who have accused him are chasing money and fame of their own.
The most striking element of the interview was Kelly's behavior. In narrated commentary, King said the singer became outwardly emotional several times. At one point, he stood towering over a calm King, literally shrieking, crying, pounding his fists and beating his chest on camera while a handler held him back.
It was an astonishing visual, especially given the decades-long list of public accusations from women who say Kelly abused them—and considering that the interview may well be used in court.
"Y'all trying to kill me!" he screamed. "You're killing me, man! This thing's not about music. I'm trying to have a relationship with my kids, and I can't do it. Y'all just don't want to believe the truth!"