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R. Kelly Trial: Assistant Compares Job to ‘Twilight Zone’

One witness is predicted to testify that she noticed their sexual contact, across the time Aaliyah was 13. And prosecutors say a second girl, who is among the accusers on the heart of the case towards Mr. Kelly, will inform jurors he as soon as admitted to her that he married Aaliyah as a result of he believed she was pregnant and was in search of authorized safety towards her attainable testimony.

Aaliyah, whose full identify was Aaliyah Dana Haughton, died in 2001 in a aircraft crash at 22. She has been recognized in court docket paperwork as Jane Doe No. 1. Mr. Smith, who first met Mr. Kelly in 1985, stated he had trigger for concern early on. Mr. Kelly and Aaliyah had been typically alone collectively at his recording studio and at his residence, Mr. Smith stated, generally for as much as an hour. At first, Mr. Smith stated, it gave the impression to be associated to music, and he gave it little thought.

However because the weeks and months handed, Mr. Smith stated, among the interactions made him uneasy.

“At occasions, I used to be involved,” he testified. On at the least one event, Mr. Smith stated, their conduct had prompted him to ask, “Robert, you ain’t messing with Aaliyah?”

He stated he meant “flirting, being flirtatious. Seducing her.”

Mr. Kelly’s marriage to Aaliyah introduced consideration to his relationships and dealings with ladies greater than 20 years in the past after Vibe journal reported on the wedding license, which listed her age as 18.

“This was, after all, an enormous downside for him,” Maria Cruz Melendez, one of many prosecutors, stated throughout a gap assertion. “If she was pregnant, that meant there can be questions: On the very prime of that record of questions — who’s the daddy of that child?”

Aaliyah was 14 when she launched her 1994 debut album, “Age Ain’t Nothing however a Quantity,” which Mr. Kelly produced. Her music, which had lengthy been unavailable on streaming platforms amid authorized disputes, was launched on Friday.

Outdoors the jury’s presence on Friday, Mr. Smith stated he had supposed to invoke his Fifth Modification proper towards self-incrimination when referred to as to testify.

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