Chicago Officials Find Evidence R. Kelly’s Studio Used as Residence
Chicago officials yesterday found multiple building code violations during an emergency inspection of R. Kelly’s recording studio, including evidence that the property is being used as a residence, the Chicago Tribune reports. Previous reports, including Lifetime’s recently released documentary Surviving R. Kelly, have identified the site as a location where women have allegedly lived with the singer against their will in “cult”-like conditions.
The inspection was ordered after a Building Department employee testified in court last week that his team visited the warehouse and saw its windows were “sealed up.” The property is zoned for commercial use and each code violation could merit daily $1,000 fines. A department spokesperson told the Tribune that an itemized list of violations will be presented at a court hearing next Tuesday.
Several protests have taken place outside the studio in the weeks since Surviving R. Kelly premiered, renewing attention on Kelly’s decades of alleged sexual abuse. The singer currently faces eviction from the building and must pay nearly $175,000 in back rent and other costs by January 21. Kelly also leases an apartment in Chicago’s Trump Tower.
The building inspection was not related to any criminal investigation, although an Illinois state’s attorney last week requested information on allegations regarding R. Kelly. The singer is reportedly the subject of an newly opened investigation in Georgia, where he also maintained residential properties.