R. Kelly’s bail paid by “a friend”; legal saga continues

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The name R. Kelly has been in the news a great deal lately. From the arguably groundbreaking documentary series, “Surviving R. Kelly,” to a host of articles regarding Kelly’s ability to tour, financial issues and most recently, his arrest and inability to bail himself out for $1 million. The singer would have needed $100,000 to get out. Instead, he spent three days in jail before a woman who first identified herself as a “friend” bailed him out.

Why R. Kelly’s resources matter

In the late 1990s, it seemed that Kelly had nearly endless resources. That cash flow or the appearance of it, would continue into the 21st century. This is even after a 1998 trial that accused Kelly of what he is being accused of now, sexually abusing women and girls for more than a decade.

So, when Kelly spent three days in jail after claiming to be unable to post bail, critics across media types speculated about what had happened to the singer’s money.

Legal experts and entertainment critics made a point of discussing Kelly’s alleged habit of paying off victims, and how doing so for so many years had perhaps taken a toll on the singer’s finances.

Therefore, the idea of Kelly not having enough money raises questions about what kind of defense he could afford. Not having enough money might also be an indication that the efforts to “mute” the singer with protests to cancel shows might be working.

The woman who would bail out R. Kelly

When the story first appeared in numerous articles and newscasts about a woman who paid Kelly’s bail, she was listed as “a friend.” Just as quickly as her anonymity was accepted, it was ripped away. Soon, everyone knew that Valencia Love, a suburban Chicago business owner had bailed Kelly out.

WGNtv.com reports that after getting bailed out, Kelly went to McDonald’s with Love and others, and then went to a cigar lounge.

Court documents indicate that Love once had a cash flow problem herself. She filed bankruptcy in 2015 claiming to owe creditors $20,000. Love also had legal trouble stemming from a disorderly conduct charge, for which she still owes $28.60 for the 2012 incident, WGNtv.com reports.

Earlier this week, though, Love had the means to pay $100,000 to bail out Kelly. There is speculation that the bulk of the money came from a tragic event in which Love’s infant daughter died during surgery. Love was given a $1 million settlement. Still, she maintains that her money came from profitable businesses, and she paid off the creditors listed in the bankruptcy.

Unfortunately, in an age where information often finds its way to the public, things like Love’s finances and link to Kelly cannot stay hidden for long. When people found out that Love bailed out Kelly, reviews for her restaurant went negative. However, Love insists that “Everyone is presumed innocent” according to WGNtv.com.

The turn of events stemming from Kelly’s alleged inability to bail himself out to a private citizen helping him, and that citizen suffering the consequences for helping Kelly paint a portrait of the singer as someone who can taint others’ reputations.

A court date for Kelly’s newest legal issues is pending.

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Dodie Miller-Gould is a native of Fort Wayne, Indiana who lives in New York City where she studies creative nonfiction at Columbia University. She has BA and MA degrees in English from Indiana University-Purdue University, Fort Wayne, and an MFA in Fiction from Minnesota State University, Mankato. Her research interests include popular music and culture, 1920s jazz, and blues, confessional poetry, and the rhetoric of fiction. She has presented at numerous conferences in rhetoric and composition, and creative writing. Her creative works have appeared in Tenth Muse, Apostrophe, The Flying Island, Scavenger's Newsletter and elsewhere. She has won university-based awards for creative work and literary criticism.

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