Atlanta Attorney And Parents Of Joycelyn Savage React To R. Kelly Guilty Verdict

In this illustration drawn from a video feed, assistant district attorney Nadia Shihata presents her rebuttal statement to the jury during R. Kelly’s sex trafficking trial, Friday, Sept. 24, 2021 in federal court in New York. R. Kelly is seen in the upper left hand corner inset and is seated lower right. The panel of photos on the left show R. Kelly’s employees and inner circle. The upper right inset are examples of texts between R Kelly and one if his victims. (AP Photo/Elizabeth Williams)

The Atlanta family of a woman involved with R&B singer R. Kelly is reacting to a New York jury finding the 54-year-old guilty on all charges, including sex trafficking and racketeering.

Local attorney Gerald Griggs is representing Timothy and Jonjelyn Savage, who have accused Kelly of abusing their daughter, Joycelyn Savage. The Stockbridge couple appeared in the 2019 “Surviving R. Kelly” documentary series and talked about the abuse allegations that have rained down on the R&B singer for decades.

Monday’s guilty verdict was built on weeks of intense testimony from victims and witnesses, mostly from women of color. Attorney Griggs told WABE’s “All Things Considered” host Jim Burress the Savage family is relieved, but there’s a range of emotions as they work to reconnect with their daughter.

“The jury heard the voices of the survivors loud and clear,” Griggs said. “But mainly they heard the voices of Black women, who have been pushing this movement forward for such a long time.”

U.S. Homeland Security officials have said the verdict brings an end to Kelly’s decade-long ‘reign of terror,’ as he could spend decades in prison for crimes including sex trafficking across state lines. Sentencing is scheduled for May 4.

One of Kelly’s lawyers, Deveraux Cannick, told the Associated Press he was disappointed and hoped to appeal.

“I think I’m even more disappointed the government brought the case in the first place, given all the inconsistencies,” Cannick said.