A former assistant of R. Kelly took the stand to testify in the singer’s racketeering trial on Tuesday (Aug. 31).
Suzette Mayweather, who worked as an assistant for Kelly for 16 months, told jurors that Kelly punished his girlfriends for dancing at an all-female birthday party that was held in his studio. “He didn’t like that they were twerking for cake,” she testified. As punishment for their behavior, Mayweather said Kelly “had to have them get on each other. I think they were fighting.” Although she did not see them fighting, she claimed that she could hear the girlfriends “laughing or screaming” and “thumping” upstairs.
She also testified how one of Kelly’s girlfriends came to her in tears because “Rob” spanked her. Mayweather said that the woman showed her marks that were on her buttocks. The 12 Play singer would also force women to remain in rooms for long periods of time and they had to ask for permission to use the bathroom, eat and leave his tour bus when they were traveling for shows.
“They did not move unless they had his permission,” Mayweather told the jurors. “If there was a male present... I interacted with the male.”
“When [Kelly’s girlfriends] walked in the elevator, when the door closed, they faced the wall,” she added.
Mayweather was the fourth employee of the “I Believe I Can Fly” singer to take the stand against him. All of Kelly’s former workers have detailed how he would have strict rules for them and his girlfriends to follow. If the workers did not adhere to his orders, their pay was docked. Several of his former girlfriends have also taken the stand to share the abuse they endured during their relationship with the disgraced singer.
Kelly is currently charged with eight violations of the Mann Act — a federal anti-sex trafficking law — and racketeering.