The woman who previously and anonymously bailed R&B singer R. Kelly out of jail this week is breaking her silence.
On Tuesday, Feb. 26, 2019, a Chicagoan businesswoman by the name of Valencia P. Love spoke with Tia Ewing of Fox32 News over the phone to discuss why she posted the $100,000 bail. Love’s identity had been confirmed in court documents obtained by The Herald News.
Readers may already be aware that R. Kelly (real name Robert Sylvester Kelly) turned himself over to police custody last Friday, Feb. 22. However, he was released from prison on bail the following Monday evening after pleading not guilty to 10 counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse, as reported by the Chicago Tribune.
“I’m not going to say it was my money or his money and he’s not broke,” Love, 47, reportedly began, according to notes taken by Ewing. Claiming that “there are three sides to every story,” she added, “He’s my friend and I knew he needed help.”
Love allegedly went on to tell Ewing that she believes Kelly is innocent. “I wasn’t there, you wasn’t there,” she said. “Give him the chance and allow him to prove his innocence. He’s not a monster, he’s not … He’s only been a gentleman to me.” Love reportedly added, “Let him have his chance in court to prove if he’s innocent or guilty.”
According to BET, Kelly was initially unable to pay the amount — which is 10% of his $1 million bond — over the weekend. After leaving the Cook County Jail, the “I Believe I Can Fly” singer immediately grabbed a bite to eat with his entourage at a local McDonald’s (via The Root). However, as Consequence of Sound noted, the 52-year-old musician may face up to 70 years behind bars if found guilty. He is currently awaiting his next scheduled court date, which will take place in Chicago, Ill. on Friday, March 22.
While there’s not much that’s publicly known about Valencia P. Love, the Daily Mail reports that she owns a number of businesses in the Windy City, including the Love on the Blu restaurant and the Lord and Child Christian Day Care. After the news broke that Love helped bail R. Kelly out, a number of social media users urged their followers to boycott her establishments.
“The woman that bailed R. Kelly out owns a restaurant in Chicago called Love on the Blu,” one person tweeted. “Don’t eat there since she wanna use the money for dumb s**t.” Another Twitter user wrote, “Old girl( Valencia Patrice Love)that bailed out R.Kelly got a brunch spot on the far south side of Chicago I’m waiting to see if y’all boycott her place make her lose some of that money she was so quick to give up for him.”
Another person shared, “I’m disgusted at the fact that someone who works in childcare paid R. Kelly’s bail. I hope every parent pulls their child from her day care.”
Amid the backlash, Love’s restaurant reportedly received negative reviews on Yelp. However, she did have at least one supporter. “I have been here in the past and the food was good, plus having a BLACK OWNED place on the southside is a great thing to have because we have been under served for so long,” the person in question wrote in their review, which was captured by a Twitter user who happened to call both parties “an idiot.” The reviewer continued, “Not sure why people are using R Kelly as a reason to give the RESTAURANT a bad review, because I thought ‘Yelp’ was all about reviewing the food and service!”
In response, Love reportedly wrote in part, “Thank you I just help.out a Friend.”
While R. Kelly is no stranger to disturbing allegations of sexual abuse and misconduct, a six-part Lifetime documentary called Surviving R. Kelly shed new light on these ongoing claims in early January 2019. Soon after the series aired, several celebs spoke out against the crooner on social media.
Following Kelly’s recent indictment, his lawyer, Steven Greenberg, told the Associated Press that the singer was “extraordinarily disappointed and depressed.” Meanwhile, attorney Michael Avenatti has taken on some of Kelly’s alleged victims as clients.
“I’m not charging anything for the work that I’ve done, because this is an outrageous case and it’s an outrageous abuse of power, targeting some of the most vulnerable people in our society. Mainly young African American girls, many of whom are from the inner city,” Avenatti said during a recent interview with SiriusXM’s The Karen Hunter Show (via Complex). He added, “I’m very satisfied today as a father, as a lawyer, as a guy that believes in right and wrong and justice, that the day of reckoning has come for R. Kelly … He will not survive this.”