Jane Doe #5 testifies R. Kelly told her to ‘trust daddy’ amid sex abuse

Posted at 10:17 AM, August 24, 2021 and last updated 7:26 PM, May 17, 2023

By Emanuella Grinberg, Court TV

NEW YORK (Court TV) — She was a 17-year-old high school junior and aspiring singer when she met R&B star R. Kelly, eager for his mentorship. Within two years, she claims Robert Sylvester Kelly infected her with herpes, physically abused her and pressured her to have an abortion — all with the help of many associates.


Jane Doe #5, now 23, was the second accuser to testify in Kelly’s federal sex crimes trial in Brooklyn. She painted a disturbing picture of what alleged servitude and mental subjugation was like under Kelly’s grip.

Prosecutors continued to question Jane Doe #5 Tuesday when testimony in Robert Kelly’s sex crimes trial resumed.

Kelly has pleaded not guilty to nine counts, four of which pertain to Jane Doe 5. He is accused of violating an anti-sex trafficking law known as the Mann Act, for allegedly transporting her – a minor – across state lines for illegal sexual activity. He is also accused of racketeering, and as the trial entered its second week Monday, prosecutors continued efforts to animate the alleged criminal enterprise that they say Kelly masterminded for his own sexual gratification.

Jane Doe 5 testified she first encountered Kelly at a concert in Orlando in April 2015, where his associates plucked from her from deep in the crowd and gave her Kelly’s number. When she called him, she told him she was 18 and accepted an invitation to audition for him in a Disney World hotel room. When she showed up, she said he would not let her sing until after he performed a sex act on her against her will. Weeks later, she said they had sexual intercourse for the first time in California, and he allegedly infected her with herpes in violation of a state public health law, an accusation part of the racketeering charge Kelly faces. By summer’s end, after she disclosed she was 17 and needed to return to school, Kelly helped orchestrate her move to Chicago so she could homeschool under his roof.

Jane Doe 5 spoke of the assistant who booked her travel plans, so she could visit Kelly, and of the assistant who scheduled and transported her to the abortion. She recalled the drivers who

watched over them as they sat in vans outside a cigar bar, waiting for Kelly. All of them took their orders from Kelly and his girlfriends, she testified.

She described the rules Kelly imposed on her and his other live-in girlfriends she eventually learned of. They had to call him “Daddy” and give him a kiss when he entered room. They could only wear sweats or oversized clothing, and had to ask his permission before going anywhere. He discouraged communication with family and friends and ordered them to delete all their social media accounts.

She said she wrote down the rules, so she could remember them. Her voice quivered with emotion as she read them aloud for jurors.

“Trust daddy and do whatever he says, whatever he says, with no rebuttal, disrespect or rebellion. Remember how I acted in the beginning, bubbly and like a child, pure and with no negative intentions, and remember to stay true to who I am, humble, happy, innocent and beautiful to daddy, reminding him of his mother and child. Tell daddy everything so he will not have to wonder and figure out what is going on with me.”

When anyone broke the rules, she said they were “chastised,” Kelly’s word for spankings. One time, she said a chastising escalated into a beating with a sneaker after an associate told Kelly she had been talking to a friend. She tried to run away and fight back, but at 4’11 and 98 lbs. “I was no match” for him, she said. Another time, when she defied another girlfriend’s directive to buy large sweatpants, she said Kelly kept her in a room for 4 to 5 days until she conceded she was somehow in the wrong. The door to the room was not locked, she said, but she feared that leaving would only make her situation worse.

Jane Doe 5 took the stand after former Kelly tour manager Demetrius Smith finished his testimony. Under cross-examination, Smith testified Kelly was not involved in discussions to bribe officials to provide false identification for Aaliyah, another aspiring singer-protegee with whom Kelly was involved.

Jane Doe 5 said Kelly once addressed his marriage to Aaliyah during an ask-me-anything conversation.

“The defendant had expressed to all of us that Aaliyah was pregnant, and needed a certificate to possibly get an abortion… aside from her parents, the only person who could go with her was spouse,” the young woman testified.