Court denies R. Kelly’s sixth appeal to be released from federal prison on bail while awaiting trial on sex abuse charges – two weeks after he was attacked by an inmate
- A New York appellate court denied R. Kelly’s request for release on Tuesday
- The panel of judges determined that a lower court was justified in keeping Kelly locked up without bail at the Metropolitan Correctional Center in Chicago
- Kelly, 53, is awaiting trial on several dozen counts of state and federal sexual misconduct charges in Illinois, Minnesota and New York
- The latest appellate ruling came two weeks after Kelly was attacked by fellow inmate Jeremiah Shane Farmer on August 26
- Farmer claimed that ‘the government’ made him attack the singer
A New York appellate court has denied R. Kelly’s request to be released from federal prison on bail after he was assaulted by a fellow inmate claimed ‘the government made [him] attack’ the singer.
Three judges in the US Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit handed down their decision on Tuesday, ruling that a lower court was justified in keeping Kelly locked up without bail at the Metropolitan Correctional Center in Chicago.
The panel affirmed the district court’s determination that Kelly poses a flight risk and that his release could endanger the community.
Kelly, 53, is currently facing several dozen counts of state and federal sexual misconduct charges in Illinois, Minnesota and New York. He has appealed his detention without bond six times.
The latest appellate ruling came days after lawyers for Kelly filed a motion on Friday asking that the apparent gang member who violently ambushed him on August 26 be acquired for questioning under oath.
The defense had hoped that having Jeremiah Shane Farmer, the convicted Latin Kings member who confessed to the attack, corroborate the details of the incident could help with Kelly’s appeal.
A New York appellate court denied R. Kelly’s request to be released on bail on Tuesday after he was assaulted by a fellow inmate at Metropolitan Correctional Center in Chicago
They also hoped the subpoena could help support a claim from Kelly’s attorney, Michael I Leonard, that faculty at the Bureau of Prisons facility even encouraged Farmer to attack his client.
Farmer, 39, is currently serving a life sentence at MCC Chicago for a racketeering conspiracy connected to a 1999 double homicide.
He was convicted in 2019 for the deaths of Marion Lowry, 74, and Harvey Siegers, 67.
Latin Kings member Jeremiah Shane Farmer (pictured) confessed to assaulting Kelly on August 26 and claimed ‘the government’ made him do it
The two men were beaten with a small sledgehammer inside their business, Calumet Auto Rebuilders, and found with severe blunt force trauma wounds to the head.
Farmer revealed his identity as the assailant in a motion titled ‘The Government Made Me Attack R-Kelly.’
Farmer said he was ‘forced’ to attack Kelly ‘in hopes of getting spotlight attention and world news notice to shed light on the government corruption,’ according to court documents obtained by The Chicago Tribune.
An incident report from the US Bureau of Prisons attached to Farmer’s filing said that he managed to separate from prison guards, enter Kelly’s cell as he slept and repeatedly stomped on his head.
Kelly, 53, remained on the bottom bunk during the incident and was only saved when security deployed pepper-spray at Farmer.
Farmer was noted for having a ‘F*** the Feds’ tattoo on his face.
Last month, Kelly was attacked inside his jail cell at the Metropolitan Correctional Center (pictured) in Chicago, Illinois
Lawyers for R. Kelly (center) have argued that Metropolitan Correctional Center staff may have played a role in thee attack
Attorneys also indicated that Farmer’s questioning would include, ‘but not limited to the role that any MCC personnel played in that attack’.
‘It appears that MCC personnel simply followed Mr. Farmer, allowed him to carry out the attack, and then only intervened after Mr. Kelly had already sustained serious injuries,’ court documents read.
Farmer also followed through with the attack ‘due to the most blatant corruption in Farmer’s case and being (on) lockdown for Robert Kelly protest.’
Earlier this year, a crowd of Kelly’s supporters gathered outside of MCC Chicago and prompted jail officials to put the building on lockdown.
The lockdown apparently upset other inmates and sparked tension.
‘Mr. Kelly was the victim of an unprovoked attack while incarcerated at the MCC because of who he is,’ Kelly’s attorney Thomas Farinella said.
‘It’s clear the Bureau of Prisons cannot adequately accommodate the need to keep him safe.’
The Chicago Tribune reports the incident between Farmer and Kelly was mentioned amid oral arguments on Friday in New York, where a legal team aimed to convince a judge that Kelly was not a danger and should be released pending trial.
Attorneys have attempted to convince federal judges that Kelly (center) was not a danger and should be released pending his trial date
Court records showed that Farmer has a history of mental illness.
Prosecutors in 2017 suggested he undergo a psychiatric exam after Farmer, who is representing himself in appeals court, revealed he was ‘suffering from a variety of mental illnesses.’ He was later found fit to stand trial.
An indictment against Farmer claimed that between 1999 and 2001, Farmer ‘tattooed his own face with two teardrops, to commemorate having killed’ Siegers and Lowry.
His tattoo reading ‘F*** the Feds’ was a more recent addition.
Kelly’s legal team also argued in their motion that the singer should be released because he’s been unable to prepare for his trial amid the pandemic.
His attorneys told CNN that they hadn’t met with Kelly in six months following when prisons went into lockdown.
The decision meant that in-person legal visits were halted, which was detrimental to Kelly, who cannot read or write, since he cannot review his legal documents.
‘He has essentially been cut out of the discovery and preparation process,’ Farinella wrote in the filing.
Kelly’s trial was scheduled for September, but it was delayed partially because of the pandemic.
Farinella argued that Kelly’s only form of communication are prison telephones that don’t ‘possess the safeguards of confidentiality’.
In 2019, Kelly (pictured) was indicted on charges related to sexual abuse in New York and Chicago
On Friday, the panel of judges did not appeared swayed by Kelly’s legal team.
‘It seems to be a blunderbuss approach to just release him,’ one judge said. ‘If we didn’t have coronavirus, I don’t think you’d be here.’
Kelly was arrested in July 2019 and later indicted in New York and Chicago on charges related to sexual abuse.
In Chicago, he’s accused of bribing victims and witnesses to change their stories.
Kelly and his co-defendants allegedly paid hundreds of thousands of dollars to retrieve child pornography tapes before they were seized by prosecutors.
In New York, prosecutors have charged him with racketeering conspiracy related to allegations he identified underage girls at concerts and groomed them for sexual abuse.
In Chicago’s Cook County, he’s been charged with sexual abuse and sexual assault. Minnesota prosecutors hit Kelly with soliciting charges.
He’s remained at the Metropolitan Correctional Center without bond ever since.