Following last month’s spate of allegations involving R. Kelly brainwashing women in an “abusive cult,” another woman has come forward to speak out about her own alleged underage sexual relationship with the singer.
A new report from Buzzfeed, written by Jim Derogatis, who reported on several investigations against Kelly in the last decade, touches on an alleged illegal relationship between Jerhonda Pace and the R&B singer. Pace says she began her relationship with Kelly when she was 16, one year below the age of consent in the U.S. state of Illinois where the incident took place. She broke off contact with Kelly after an incident in which she claims: “I was slapped and I was choked and I was spit on” by the singer.
Last month, an explosive report about the singer revealed that he was allegedly acting as a “puppet master” to several women in a cult-like controlling environment in Chicago and Atlanta, where he reportedly “controls every aspect of their lives: dictating what they eat, how they dress, when they bathe, when they sleep, and how they engage in sexual encounters that he records.” Kelly has since denied those claims, noting in a statement that he is “both alarmed and disturbed at the recent revelations attributed to him.” Pace corroborated the report, saying she was a subject to Kelly’s rules, and experienced mental and physical abuse if she didn’t abide by them. Some of these rules included, having to dress in loose-fitting clothes, turning her phone over to Kelly and having to ask permission to eat, use the bathroom, shower and leave the house.
Although Pace, now 24, signed a nondisclosure agreement about her relationship with Kelly in exchange for a settlement, she said she feels the need to tell her story in hopes of helping any women who are still associated with the singer. “If I can speak out and I can help them get out of that situation, that’s what I will do,” she stated. “He’s brainwashed them really bad, and it kind of reminds me of Charles Manson.”
“I feel like this is a healing process for me, because I’ve been holding this in for so many years, and to see that he always gets away with it, it’s just not right.”