As the public continues to react to the explosive allegations levied against R. Kelly in the Lifetime docu-series “Surviving R. Kelly,” reports emerged this week that the Office of the Fulton County District Attorney has begun a criminal investigation into the singer.
On Tuesday, TMZ reported that Kelly was under criminal investigation thanks to the documentary.
However, a source told Atlanta Black Star Tuesday that the DA’s office simply reached out to Atlanta attorney Gerald Griggs, who is representing the family of one of the star’s alleged victims shown in the documentary, Joycelyn Savage, to obtain a phone number.
Griggs cleared things up himself Thursday and told ABS he thinks he’s collected enough proof so that the crooner can be investigated.
“I clearly believe there’s sufficient evidence to open a criminal investigation,” he told Atlanta Black Star Jan. 10. “I’ve also spoken to witnesses that live in that neighborhood and they are now reporting that they have called the police over the last year and a half numerous times about suspicious activity at the Johns Creek house. I was contacted to provide contact information for individuals that have knowledge about what happened in that house. And that’s what I provided [to the DA].”
The lawyer explained that typically a chief investigator would not request phone numbers in a closed investigation.
He also said it’s been two years since his clients, the Savages, have spoken to their daughter, who famously went on TMZ last year to proclaim she was not being held against her will in light of the bombshell allegations of Kelly’s alleged sexual abuse.
“We have numerous incidents that happened in Fulton County,” Griggs said. “I know Johns Creek turned the file over to the Fulton County District Attorney’s Office, and that’s all I know as far as any investigation. And then I know I was contacted.”
Griggs said after the docu-series aired, the D.A.’s office contacted him requesting phone numbers for two people featured in the series.
“The world saw two witnesses on national television that detailed crimes that occurred in that house in Johns Creek,” he said. “One of which was a former employee of Mr. Kelly and the other was Asante McGee.”
False imprisonment and domestic abuse are among the crimes Kelly is alleged to have committed that Griggs is looking into. He is looking to continue to try to make contact with Savage herself and cooperate with law enforcement in Atlanta’s Fulton and Chicago’s Cook County, the latter of which Griggs says is taking the “charges very seriously.”
“They have opened an investigation and they’re in the process of gathering witnesses and doing witness interviews,” he said after acknowledging that two women have come forward with new allegations against the singer, who is accused of holding women hostage in his Chicago studio. Griggs noted he hopes that the new will help his own case on behalf of the Savages that their daughter was abused by Kelly while in Georgia.
“I would hope that once agencies start to coordinate it would help push Fulton County to request witness come forward, because, clearly, they’re coming forward. We get tips on our hotline every single day,” he disclosed. “We had four yesterday, alone, of potential new cases that have not been reported before.”
Griggs said he isn’t sure about why Fulton County, which announced but never held a news conference last year on the allegations of abuse at Kelly’s former home in the county, hasn’t pursued the case. The attorney made it clear he is “ready, willing and able” to cooperate and give more witnesses for an investigation, including the neighbors that have called local authorities about the Johns Creek house.
“We are willing to cooperate fully and we hope — since there may be an indication that they’re not opening an investigation — we hope that they would contact the witnesses that we provided and the witnesses that we can provide and I think that would persuade them to open an investigation.”
Kelly has been evicted from the Atlanta-area home in question after racking up $30,000 in unpaid rent. He and Savage are currently believed to be in Chicago.
“All I know is my client has not spoken to their daughter in two years and she has been seen in Fulton County at that house by witnesses that were put on national television,” Griggs said. “I also know hat Johns Creek Police department never made direct contact with Joycelyn Savage when they did the wellness check.”
On Wednesday, Kelly’s Chicago-based attorney issued a statement to Fox 5 in defense of his client.
“Mr. Kelly has done nothing. That’s why no one has called the police. That’s why there’s no evidence of him doing anything wrong,” Steve Greenberg told the news station Jan. 9.
Anyone who has information on 23-year-old Savage’s whereabouts or any information about the doings of Kelly is asked to call a victims tip hotline set up by the Savages at (678) 744-3185.
“We have pertinent evidence that these young ladies are in danger. It’s not the time to play coy,” Griggs said. “If they have an investigation, they need to let people know so witnesses can come forward. That’s exactly what Chicago has done and you see, Chicago is getting witnesses to come forward.”
Atlanta Black Star spoke to Chris Hopper, the Office of the Fulton County District Attorney
director of public affairs. He would not confirm or deny if there is an active criminal investigation into R. Kelly. Hopper only said, “no comment.”