Sojourner's Place

update to breaking news! r. kelly walks!  

Posted by SjP in

Just heard this on Fox (yeah I know) - R. Kelly has been acquitted. This is breaking news, so that's all I got for now!

Despite eyewitness testimony to the contrary, R. Kelly was acquitted today on all counts of his child pornography trial. I suspect, however, that the real key to his acquittal is the very thing that got him charged in the first place - The Video Tape! Said to be grainy, Kelly maintained that it was not he on the video as did the alleged now 23 year old victim.
To have returned a guilty verdict, the jury had to determine whether or not it was Kelly in the video tape. A determination that had to be made "beyond a shadow" of a doubt. If it's Kelly on the tape - he's guilty. If it's not Kelly on the tape - he's not guilty. If you ain't sure that it's Kelly - then you got to let him walk. Did the Prosecution prove beyond a shadow of a doubt that it was in deed Kelly on the tape? Probably not.

According to both CNN and WGN, Kelly's continued assertion that he was not in the video regardless of the strong resemblance to the man in the video was based on the appearance or lack thereof of a mole on his back. The Defense maintained that there was no mole - while the Prosecution pointed to a dark spot on his back that could have been a mole. Hmmm...interesting.

So, what do I think about the verdict? I admit that I saw the video. Yes, it was pretty grainy...but it looked like ARRAH to me. And given the well kept secret that everybody seemed to know about, I was fairly convinced that it was in fact ARRAH in the video given his propensity for young girls. Remember, Allyah married a 26 year old Kelly in 1994 when she was just 15.

But being "fairly convinced" is not enough when you're a juror. You have to - you must be - 100% sure and backed up by clear and convincing evidence. I know this first hand having recently served on a jury. Doesn't matter what you think, doesn't matter what you speculate. The only things that matter are the evidence and jury instructions. And given that - sometimes the verdict is not what anyone expected.

I suspect that there are 12 people right now in Chicago are hoping and praying that they did the right thing. I also suspect that there are 12 people right now in Chicago who may be very ticked off at a Prosecution who did not give them the evidence necessary to keep a probable pedophile off the streets.

Holla Back!

Obliged to you for hearing me, and now old Sojourner's Place ain't got nothing more to say.

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This entry was posted at Friday, June 13, 2008 and is filed under . You can follow any responses to this entry through the .

7 sojourners hollin' back


I'm fucking pissed!

June 13, 2008 at 4:04 PM

Yeah! I really don't know how this one came down like this. Looked like him to me!

On another note, hope you come back thru and check my Share the Love post - left something there for you.


June 13, 2008 at 4:29 PM

You know, SjP...I read somewhere else that the jurors knew that this fool was guilty, but the prosecution failed to prove their case...

I was convinced from the start that if they were going in with the evidence that they had (code=none), that he was going to walk...the holes in their case were apparent to me, and I got all the information second hand...

I am pissed, but surprised? No...and that is what is sad...

June 13, 2008 at 8:22 PM

I heard the verdict and just nodded in disbelief!

June 14, 2008 at 3:03 AM

It's pretty hard to convict someone when you have both the accused and the victim yelling, "that's not me!"

June 14, 2008 at 8:44 AM

Sjp..I too understand about the juror life, sadly what you say is so true. That one phrase, "beyond" a shadow of a doubt is what stops a lot of justice..

well at least in "this era." I hate to point out the fact if it was a little "white" girl (back in the day), Justice would not even have and ear. Black man, white girl (minor), the black man is placed UNDER the jail.

Although many admire his musical skills, R. Kelly has and will always be guilty to many of us. It is like O.J., no matter what the ruling is, the court of opinion ways heavy. Thanks for the award, I will go to that post and pick it up.

June 14, 2008 at 9:21 AM

Ms Marva - It's hard for me to believe that the prosecution went into this after 6 years without an air-tight case. I really didn't follow it, so hadn't heard much of what they had or didn't have. Guess I just assumed that he was going to be found guilty.

Ms LadyDeborah - same here! I was/am truly shocked!

Sheila - Nancy Grace has been steaming at the fact that the defense didn't call the victim or Kelly. But, they didn't have to because they had grand jury testimony from both saying that they weren't on the tape. Didn't matter that others said it was - both the victim and the accused said under sworn testimony that it wasn't. So, you're right - can't convict...
Irigal - As you say, Unless you've served on a jury, people really have no idea just how "blind" that process really is. I've been hearing that the jury was "star struck" and that's the reason for their verdict. I doubt that very seriously. Might have started out that way...but don't think that's the way it ended up.

I really believe that most jurors really take those words 'innocent until proven guilty" and "beyond a shadow of a doubt' seriously. Based on what I've been hearing, the Prosecution didn't present the evidence to prove that he was guilty. And, unfortunately Kelly is a free man.

I agree that the verdict may have been different if the victim had been white. But, if the victim had been white, I believe that the evidence presented against Kelly would have been much different. And therein, lies the difference for me.

I suspect that had the victim been white, the jury would have heard about ALL of his past history with young girls and the law suits he's settled as a result. The evidence would have been much different.

All: From what I heard last night, it appears that the jury's decision was based on whether or not it was the alleged victim in the video rather than if it was Kelly. That's a very interesting twist to all this - and one I don't really understand. Guess we'll just have to wait for the analysis to begin to understand why and how...

Much obliged for stopping by...

June 14, 2008 at 11:00 AM
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