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R. Kelly’s Crisis Manager Steps Down After CBS This Morning Interview

R. Kelly’s crisis manager Darrell Johnson has quit after his CBS This Morning appearance on Monday, July 22. Host Gayle King said she spoke to Johnson on Monday night, and that the crisis manager said he had resigned “for personal reasons.”

“He said he was not asked to step down,” King reported. “He believes he could become a distraction to R. Kelly’s case. He believes in R. Kelly. … But no one asked him to leave, he said.”

During his Monday morning interview, Johnson offered some pretty frank commentary on the embattled singer’s legal situation while at the table with the show’s anchors.

“Mr. Kelly’s a mess right now,” he began. When King asked Johnson whether or not he’d allow his 20-something daughter to be alone with R. Kelly, his response was clear: “Absolutely not. I wouldn’t leave my daughter with anybody that’s accused of pedophilia.”

“That doesn’t seem like a contradiction to you?” asked King, to which Johnson replied, “I wouldn’t leave my daughter with anyone—I’m going to say it again—that’s accused of being a pedophile.”

Pressed on whether or not R. Kelly is on suicide watch, Johnson said that he “would assume at this point he is.” He continued, “Nobody wants to be locked down 24 hours, no TV. He can’t read and write, so he can’t read a book. It’s almost as if he’s already been—a jury has convicted him.”

By Monday afternoon, Johnson had stepped down as Kelly’s crisis manager. “I step down as crisis manager for personal reasons,” said Johnson in a statement to CBS. “Mr. Kelly is in good hands with [his criminal defense attorney Steve] Greenberg.”

Kelly is facing 18 new counts of sex crime charges in Illinois and New York, but has maintained his innocence. If convicted, he could face up to 195 years behind bars on just the Chicago charges.

For more details on his alleged crimes, read our timeline.

Tags: R. Kelly