A woman who said she was a former Epic Records intern in her teens is claiming that R. Kelly sexually abused her when she was only 16-years-old.
Tracy Sampson, now 36, told NBC’s Dateline that she first met R. Kelly in the summer of 1999 when she was just 16. She had been interning for the famous record label.
When they first met, Sampson said that the “Ignition” singer tried to kiss her, but she declined.
“’Well, give me a hug.’” she says R. Kelly told her. “And then, like, when I gave him a hug he just started kissing me.”
“I was in love with him,“ she added. ”I just didn’t know what to do. Like, I didn’t know if this was normal. I didn’t know if this is how adults acted.“
Sampson said she filed a lawsuit against Kelly after she turned 18 and ended their relationship, claiming the singer sexually abused her. She said she settled the lawsuit for $250,000 in 2002.
R. Kelly’s attorney, Steve Greenberg, denied Sampson’s claim, which comes days after Lifetime’s docuseries, Surviving R. Kelly, aired. The six-part series included the voices of 50 of the singer’s alleged victims and survivors who claimed R. Kelly sexually and physically abused them and their families. Since then, critics have called for RCA to drop R. Kelly.
Sampson’s claims also came at the same time that Sony and RCA Records dropped R. Kelly from their label. Variety reports that Sony decided to “dissolve” their “working relationship” with the singer although he’ll remain listed on their websites since R. Kelly’s back catalog will still be owned by the music companies. Still, both Sony and RCA declined to comment and Variety says no actual announcement will be made.
R. Kelly has continuously denied the sexual misconduct allegations levied against him for the past two decades.