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R. Kelly’s former hairdresser accuses singer of sexual abuse

R. Kelly walks into the Daley Center on Wednesday, March 6, 2019. | Ashlee Rezin/Sun-Times

R. Kelly’s one-time hairdresser — and one of his alleged victims in the latest series of sexual abuse charges — is speaking publicly for the first time, telling CBS This Morning that the singer forced her to perform a sex act on him in 2003.

Lanita Carter, in an interview that aired Thursday, said she had been braiding Kelly’s hair for about a year when she got a call from the singer on Feb. 18, 2003, to “come down to do his hair.” But when she arrived, he instead asked her to massage his head, Carter said.

“When he came into the room and he asked for that head massage, and I told him I didn’t do massages, I laughed it off,” Carter said.

Then, Kelly pulled her head down toward him, she said, her eyes welling with tears.

“He say, ‘Suck it for Daddy. Suck it for Daddy,'” Carter said.

According to the interview, the alleged sex act stopped only after someone knocked on the door.

“I kept thinking to myself, ‘Why did this happen to me?'” Carter said.

READ MORE: The R. Kelly investigation

Carter said she called police the same day, eventually handing over a shirt that she said had semen on it. But charges were never brought at the time, she said.

She said she eventually received a $650,000 settlement in which Kelly denied any wrongdoing and Carter agreed not to talk about it.

Kelly’s current attorney, Steve Greenberg, told the Chicago Sun-Times Thursday in a written statement that Chicago police at the time had done an “extensive investigation.”

Greenberg added: “The state’s attorney’s office decided not to charge it. I think that speaks volumes about the strength of the case. And that decision was made notwithstanding the scientific testing.”

When Cook County State’s Attorney Kim Foxx made a public plea earlier this year for alleged Kelly victims to come forward to tell their stories, Carter responded, the hairdresser said.

Kelly was charged in February with 10 counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse involving four victims, at least three of them minors. The alleged crimes span from 1998 to 2010. The minors were between 13 and 16, prosecutors allege. Carter is identified as “L.C.” in the indictments, according to the TV report. Carter is also listed as a “victim” on Kelly’s Chicago police arrest report dated Feb. 22.

Kelly has pleaded not guilty to the charges.

“This is a release. I’ve been carrying it since 2003. I don’t want to be in public. If I die tomorrow, I know I told the truth,” Carter said.


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