Feds: R. Kelly remains on suicide watch ‘for his own safety’

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FILE - R. Kelly appears during a hearing at the Leighton Criminal courthouse in Chicago, Sept. 17, 2019. Federal authorities are pushing back Saturday, July 2, 2022 claims by R. Kelly that he was placed on suicide watch as a form of punishment after a judge sentenced him to 30 years behind bars for using his fame to sexually abuse young girls.  (Antonio Perez/Chicago Tribune via AP, Pool, File)

FILE – R. Kelly appears during a hearing at the Leighton Criminal courthouse in Chicago, Sept. 17, 2019. Federal authorities are pushing back Saturday, July 2, 2022 claims by R. Kelly that he was placed on suicide watch as a form of punishment after a judge sentenced him to 30 years behind bars for using his fame to sexually abuse young girls. (Antonio Perez/Chicago Tribune via AP, Pool, File)

PA

Federal authorities are pushing back on R. Kelly’s claims that he was placed on suicide watch as a form of punishment last week after a judge sentenced him to 30 years behind bars for using his fame to sexually abuse Girls.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office in Brooklyn filed court documents late Saturday saying the disgraced R&B superstar remains on suicide watch “for his own safety” following a psychological evaluation.

Kelly’s “current life circumstances undoubtedly bring emotional distress,” wrote Assistant U.S. Attorney Melanie Speight in a court filing.

“He is a convicted sex offender who has been sentenced to spend the next three decades in prison,” she added. “In the immediate future, he faces another federal criminal trial in Chicago on charges related to child pornography.”

Kelly’s attorney filed the lawsuit on Friday, alleging prison officials placed him on suicide watch at the Brooklyn Metropolitan Detention Center “solely for punitive purposes and because of his inmate status. high profile,” adding that Kelly had no intention of harming herself.

“Nothing happened at sentencing that surprised Mr. Kelly,” attorney Jennifer Bonjean wrote in the lawsuit. “While suicide watch conditions may be appropriate for people who are at real risk of harm, they are cruel and unconstitutional under the Eighth Amendment for people who are not suicidal.”

Kelly, 55, did not make a statement and showed no reaction upon hearing his sentence, which also included a $100,000 fine.

The Grammy-winning and multi-platinum songwriter was convicted last year of racketeering and sex trafficking. He has denied any wrongdoing and plans to appeal his conviction.

The US Bureau of Prisons has come under increased scrutiny since financier Jeffrey Epstein killed himself behind bars in 2019 while awaiting trial for sexually abusing girls as young as 14 and young people women in New York and Florida in the early 2000s.

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