A Timeline: R. Kelly's Sexual Predatory Behavior And The Events That Lead Him There

Here’s a timeline of R. Kelly’s torrid past and his history of sexual perversion.

Veronica Hilbring Jul, 18, 2017

In a bombshell report released today, concerned parents have reported that R. Kelly is allegedly holding their daughters against their will in a cult. Family members of three woman told their stories about how Kelly lured the young women in with promises of fame but now control their every waking moment.

Writer and former Chicago Sun-Times reporter Jim DeRogatis has been covering R. Kelly’s sordid past for nearly 20 years. DeRogatis is the reporter who received the infamous R. Kelly sex tape 15 years ago which led to Kelly’s arrest and later acquittal. His explosive new piece is the latest in Kelly’s history of sexual perversion.

Here’s a timeline of R. Kelly’s past:

1 of 33 Courtesy of R. Kelly

R. Kelly wrote in his biography that beginning at the age of 8 years old, he began watching people have sex and even photographed couples engaging in sex. He also said he molested by an older woman repeatedly for a number of years. He was also reportedly sexually abused by a man as a pre-teen.

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R. Kelly is discovered and signs to Jive records.

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R. Kelly’s solo album 12 Play is released.

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15 year old Aaliyah’s debut album Age Ain’t Nothing But A Number is released. The album is mostly written and produced by Kelly.

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R. Kelly and Aaliyah are married in suburban Chicago hotel. Kelly is 27 and Aaliyah is 15. The marriage certificate is falsified and lists Aaliyah as 18. Aaliyah’s family learns of the marriage and they are immediately separated. From 1994 until Aaliyah’s death in 2001, they never spoke again. Aaliyah never publicly addressed the brief marriage. Vibe Magazine publishes the marriage certificate in an issue later that year.

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R.Kelly’s brief marriage to Aaliyah is annulled.

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R. Kelly married dancer and choreographer Andrea Kelly. They will go on to have three children together. Family of Andrea told Chicago Sun-Times reporter Mary Mitchell, they were not allowed to visit her at their home and isn’t even allowed to speak to her on the phone.

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R. Kelly is sued for $10 million by a Tiffany Hawkins. The lawsuit alleges Hawkins began having sex with Kelly in 1991 when she was 15 and he was 24. The relationship ended when she turned 18. She later attempted suicide. The lawsuit doesn’t make news until years later.

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Barry Hankerson, Aaliyah’s uncle, resigns as Kelly’s manager. He writes a letter saying he believes Kelly needs psychiatric help for his attraction to underage girls.

2000 – October

R. Kelly is a principal of the day at Chicago Public Schools.

2000 - November

Reporter Jim DeRogatis receives a fax stating that R. Kelly has been under investigation for two years by the sex-crimes united of the Chicago Police.

2000 – December

The Chicago Sun-Times publishes the first investigative report on R. Kelly.

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R. Kelly is sued by aspiring rapper and Columbia College student Tracy Sampson. She claimed to have lost her virginity to the star at 17. She is quoted in the lawsuit as saying, “I was lied to by him. I was coerced into receiving oral sex from a girl I did not want to have sex with. I was often treated as his personal sex object and cast aside. He would tell me to come to his studio and have sex with him, then tell me to go. He often tried to control every aspect of my life including who I would see and where I would go.”

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Kelly settles the out of court for an undisclosed sum.

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R. Kelly sells his Chicago home where parts of the sextape were allegedly filmed. 


Kelly is sued by Patrice Jones, a Chicago woman who claims Kelly impregnated her when she was underage and that an associate of his took her to have an abortion. Jones claimed to have met R. Kelly at Rock ‘n’Roll McDonald’s in Chicago on the night of her prom. Jones’ lawyer in the case, Susan E. Loggins claimed to have settled another case with a young woman in Minneapolis before Jones’ lawsuit was filed.

13 of 33 AP Images

Kelly is sued again by another woman, Montina Woods. Woods claimed she was unknowingly filmed by Kelly during sex. Kelly settles the lawsuit.


Lawyer Susan E. Loggins told the Chicago Sun-Times that Kelly made additional payments to an unspecified number of woman who also threatened to file lawsuits.

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R. Kelly is indicted on 21 counts of child pornography and arrested at his vacation home in Florida.

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R. Kelly pleads not guilty and posts bail. After leaving jail, he visits his spiritual advisor and then sings at a kindergarten graduation, which violates a court order to avoid contact with any children outside his family.

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R. Kelly releases ‘Heaven I need a hug.’ In the song, Kelly proclaims his innocence and attacks the media and people who have betrayed him.

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Seven of the 21 counts against Kelly are dropped.

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Judge Vincent Gaughn grows frustrated with the prosecution and threatens to dismiss the case if a timeline is not established.

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Kelly’s wife, Andrea files for an order of protection alleging Kelly hit her. They later reconcile.

20 of 33 Tom Briglia/Getty

Kelly’s brother, Carey Kelly releases a dvd saying that R. Kelly was proud of the video and showed it to his friends constantly. He also states that R. Kelly offered him $50,000 a record deal to tell the police that it was him (Carey) in the video.

21 of 33 Marcus Ingram/Getty

Andrea Kelly speaks with ESSENCE Magazine but declines to say whether she saw the tape. She also refuses to accompany him to court appearances.

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R. Kelly’s trial is post-posed until 2008. It had been five years since his initial arrest.

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The Chicago Sun-Times, Chicago Tribune, Associated Press and Chicago Public Media file a petition to make all Kelly-related court records public.

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Illinois Supreme Court denies media outlets petition.

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Jury selection begins. Prosecution calls a dozen people to the stand to testify the girl in the video of the R. Kelly sex tape is underage. His former protégé and aunt of the young girl, Stephanie ‘Sparkle’ Edwards testifies that it is R. Kelly in the tape. Reporter DeRogatis is called to the stand where he asserts reporter’s privilege when asked if he had viewed the tape. Admitting to viewing the tape would be admitting to the viewing of child pornography, a felony.

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R. Kelly is found not guilty on all counts. Jurors say they were certain it was R. Kelly on the tape but they weren’t certain if the young girl was underage.

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Jim DeRogatis publishes the latest explosive R. Kelly report. During these more than 20 years of allegations, Kelly released 14 studio albums and remained a staple in pop music and culture.

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In a BBC documentary, R. Kelly: Sex, Girls and Videotapes, an ex-girlfriend of the singer named Kitti Jones claimed that he trained her to be his sex slave when she was 14 years old. Jones who was in a relationship with the Chicago native from 2011-2013 told The Guardian he groomed her for sex in a “sex dungeon.”

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Scott Legato/Getty Images

Although his record label, RCA, has not dropped him from their musical roster, members of R. Kelly’s team decided to part ways with him as sexual misconduct allegations grow. Kelly’s lawyer, Linda Mensch confirmed to the BBC that she and his executive assistant Diane Copeland have dropped the 51-year-old from their client list. Along with his lawyer and executive assistant, his publicist, Trepan Kutti, also exited his team, telling Rolling Stone, "effective April 16, 2018, I no longer represent Mr. Robert Kelly."

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R. Kelly’s 20-year-old daughter, Joann Kelly told TMZ she “feels terrible” about the sexual assault allegations surrounding her father. “I don’t have much of a comment,” she said. “It’s very close to my heart. It’s just hard because it’s family matters, you know? But, overall it’s hard. I try not to speak about it too much, but…it is what it is. I feel terrible.”

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Stephen J. Cohen/Getty Images

Popular and longtime morning show radio host Tom Joyner announced he would no longer play R. Kelly’s music. During Jacque Reid's "Inside Her Story" segment of the Tom Joyner Morning Show, #MeToo founder Tarana Burke said the support Kelly receives from fans and people in the industry only contributes to his power and asked that Joyner no longer play his music. In turn, the radio host vowed, "Okay, you got it. I’ll do that right now. I won’t play anymore R. Kelly music."

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Noam Galai/Getty Images

Celebrities say enough is enough to support of R. Kelly and his music and voiced support for the #MuteRKelly campaign. Started in 2017 by Kenyette Barnes and Oronike Odeleye-- Ava DuVernay, Shonda Rhimes, Jurnee Smollett and Bell, John Legend and more committed to ending support of the singer and called on corporations and music lovers separate themselves from him.

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Courtesy of Megan Kelly TODAY

In a sit down on Megan Kelly TODAY in the first TV interview, two women—Asante McGee and Kitti Jones—detailed their experience with Kelly and shared that the singer controlled nearly every aspect of their life stating they were required to call him “daddy” and had to ask permission to use the bathroom as they weren't permitted to walk freely through his Atlanta home.