R. Kelly is on suicide watch following 30-year prison sentence
Brooklyn, New York - R. Kelly has been placed on suicide watch at Brooklyn's federal jail following his 30-year sentence for sex trafficking – and his lawyer says the disgraced R&B star has no business being there.
The 55-year-old has been alone in a cell at the Metropolitan Detention Complex since his sentencing Wednesday for a 25-year scheme in which he sexually and mentally abused fans and other young women.
Kelly's lawyer Jennifer Bonjean told the Daily News he had prepared himself mentally for the steep prison term imposed by Brooklyn Federal Court Judge Ann Donnelly and was content in the general population.
"He was absolutely fine. He had adjusted just fine. The rank and file correctional officers understand this. They deal with him. This is [a] higher-up policy that is deplorable," said Bonjean, who planned to file papers Friday requesting MDC's rationale.
"They admit that his high profile nature is one of the considerations. I'm sorry, where is the data that someone who is high profile is more likely to hurt himself? Other than the isolated Jeffrey Epstein incident, I don't know what their data is to support anything like that" she said.
R Kelly's complaints rival those of Ghislaine Maxwell
Kelly's complaints are similar to those of another high-profile inmate at the jail on the Sunset Park waterfront: Ghislaine Maxwell. The former British socialite, who was sentenced to 20 years in prison on Tuesday, has complained she's been put on suicide watch repeatedly without justification.
A source said Friday morning that Maxwell, 60, remains on suicide watch.
Neither Maxwell nor Kelly will be at the MDC for much longer. The former socialite has requested to serve her two decades at Danbury women's prison in Connecticut. The low-security federal prison inspired the popular Netflix series Orange is the New Black.
Kelly is set to go on trial in Chicago next month on child pornography, obstruction of justice, and sexual abuse charges.
Cover photo: Collage: REUTERS