Artist News Legal

R Kelly lawyers ask to interview singer’s prison attacker under oath

By | Published on Monday 7 September 2020

R Kelly

Lawyers for R Kelly are seeking to interview a prison inmate who allegedly attacked the singer last month. Kelly’s legal team claim that prison staff allowed the attack to happen and are again arguing for the incarcerated musician to be allowed out of jail.

Kelly was attacked in his cell on 26 Aug and was apparently punched in the head several times before his attacker was subdued using pepper spray. He was checked over by a prison doctor and found to have no serious injuries.

Last week, Jeremiah Farmer – a member of the Latin Kings gang, currently serving a life sentence – said that he had carried out the attack. In a court filing, he said that he had done so in a bid to gain media attention for what he says is “government corruption” in the handling of his own case.

Farmer is appealing his conviction for racketeering, but says that during the COVID-19 pandemic he has not been allowed to use the prison library, meaning he could not prepare for court hearings adequately. He also claims that attorneys assigned to him have been “ineffective” and that they “conspired against” him.

In a court filing last week, Farmer wrote that “with nowhere else to turn for legal help”, he “was forced to assault hip hop R&B singer Robert Kelly in hopes of getting spotlight attention and world news notice to shed the light on the government corruption”.

Last week, Kelly’s attorney Steve Greenberg said that the musician had been moved into solitary confinement because it was “the only place they can protect him”.

Now, his legal team has filed a motion asking the court to allow them to interview Farmer under oath. In the new court filing, according to the Chicago Tribune, another Kelly attorney, Michael Leonard, writes: “It appears that [prison staff] simply followed Mr Farmer, allowed him to carry out the attack, and then only intervened after Mr Kelly had already sustained serious injuries”.

The response to the attack by Farmer is the latest bid to get Kelly released from prison and instead placed on house arrest. The star is currently in custody pending child abuse trials in New York and Chicago. He is being held due to evidence of witness tampering in a previous trial.