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R. Kelly’s ex-manager charged for threatening call to screening of “Surviving R. Kelly”

Donnell Russell was charged with one count of conspiracy to threaten physical harm and one count of threatening physical harm.

R. Kelly Getty Images

The former manager of R. Kelly has been charged for allegedly making a threatening phone call to the theater that was screening the docuseries “Surviving R. Kelly.”

According to multiple reports, Donnell Russell, who was allegedly Kelly’s manager at the time of the incident, was charged with two counts of threatening physical harm by interstate communication and conspiracy to do the same.

On December 4, 2018, Russell allegedly contacted a Neuehouse employee by phone and said that someone had a gun and was going to shoot everyone during the screening. He also reportedly worked with another individual to create messages that would discourage the Lifetime network from airing the docuseries.

“Threats of gun violence aimed at intimidating and silencing victims of sexual abuse are unlawful as well as unacceptable,” said U.S. Attorney Audrey Strauss in a statement. “We are committed to aggressively investigating and prosecuting such crimes.”

Russell also tried to send a cease-and-desist letter to stop the screening from happening. On Thursday (Aug. 13), a $75,000 bail package was approved for the former manager. Each of his charges carry a maximum penalty of five years in prison. He is scheduled to make his first court appearance on Friday (Aug. 14).

Earlier this week, authorities discovered that Kelly allegedly had $1.2 million hidden in a private account under someone else's name.

The “It Seems Like You’re Ready” singer was reportedly controlling the funds in the account while he was incarcerated in a Chicago prison. He assigned his royalties to the company and instructed people to contact the person whose name the account was under to “receive payments indirectly from” him.

The funds debunk his claims that he did not have any money to use to flee the country — if he were to be released from prison due to COVID-19. The account is currently under investigation.

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