Chicago criminal defense attorney Ed Genson, who has bile duct cancer and is facing his own mortality, decided to share what may be his last words on R. Kelly with a Chicago newspaper.
Genson, now 77, represented Kelly in 2008 when the rhythm and blues star was tried on child pornography charges.
“I can say whatever I want, but we’ve got to do it fast,” he said during an interview with Chicago Sun-Times reporter Neil Steinberg. “It would be nice to get it down so somebody knows besides me.”
The jury acquitted Kelly of the charges, which centered on a video prosecutors said showed him having sex with a 13-year-old girl. Kelly could have been sentenced to 15 years in prison.
“He was guilty as hell!” Genson told Steinberg. “I don’t think he’s done anything inappropriate for years. I’ll tell you a secret: I had him go to a doctor to get shots, libido-killing shots. That’s why he didn’t get arrested for anything else.”
Genson’s revelations come as Kelly sits in a Chicago jail for failure to pay $161,000 in back child support. Authorities said he will remain in jail until he comes up with the money.
Steinberg said he talked to Genson “several weeks ago,” but it wasn’t until he saw Kelly’s interview with Gayle King on “CBS This Morning” that he decided to publish the lawyer’s remarks.
Kelly was charged Feb. 22 with 10 counts of aggravated sexual abuse involving four women. Nine of the counts are for aggravated criminal sexual abuse based on three of the alleged victims being under 17 and Kelly being more than five years older.
Steinberg said he didn’t want to affect any potential jury pool but believed Kelly’s television appearance might have been doing just that.
“Is Kelly tampering with the jury by going on TV?” Steinberg asked Genson.
“He is,” Genson said. “I’m trying to figure out why he did it. I don’t know whether his lawyer is an idiot. He might be.”
Kelly’s current lawyer, Steven Greenberg, “insists he is not an idiot, nor trying to affect potential jurors,” Steinberg wrote.
Genson kept Kelly out of trouble for 10 years, he told Steinberg.
“I was vetting his records,” Genson said. “I listened to them, which ones would make a judge mad.”
The lawyer said he was riding in the car with Kelly and listening to the original version of “Ignition.” The lyrics were about a high school instructor teaching people how to drive, Genson said.
“I was riding in the car, listening to a song and said, ‘Are you crazy? This is all I need.’ He re-wrote it,” Genson said in the interview.
In January, Kelly’s legal troubles returned to the spotlight after Lifetime aired a six-part docuseries on the physical and sexual abuse allegations against him. The final episodes focused on allegations of a sex cult at Kelly’s homes in two cities, including Johns Creek.
After the series aired, the Fulton County District Attorney’s Office opened an investigation into the allegations.
Atlantan Joycelyn Savage, a 23-year-old girlfriend of Kelly’s, was part of the “CBS This Morning” interview, during which she defended the singer.