R. Kelly proclaimed his innocence in an incendiary interview with Gayle King on Wednesday morning. But the parents of 23-year-old Atlantan Joycelyn Savage, who say they haven’t had contact with their daughter in the two years since she embarked on a relationship with the embattled R&B singer, have their own pointed response.
“From day one, the only thing we want to do is hear from our daughter and know she’s fine…that she’s healthy, safe and sound,” said Savage’s father, Timothy, in a press conference Wednesday morning in Atlanta.
Added Savage’s mother, Jonjelyn, “If you’re seeing this message, please know I love you. Nothing that we’ve done was to embarrass you, it’s because we care about your well-being. We won’t stop until we have our answers and make sure you’re safe and sound.”
Kelly, 52, has been charged with 10 counts of aggravated sexual assault and sat down with King for a lengthy interview on “CBS This Morning.” King also spoke to Savage and another woman currently living with him, Azriel Clary. That interview will air Friday morning on the show.
The press conference, arranged by the Savage’s Atlanta lawyer, Gerald Griggs, was also an opportunity for the family to refute Kelly’s claims that Timothy Savage introduced his daughter to Kelly and that the family received money from the singer.
“At no point has Mr. Kelly ever met Timothy Savage,” said Griggs. “At no point have the Savages requested or received money from (Kelly). They don’t want any money. He has settled at least six cases with non-disclosure arrangements. Why was he making those payout if there was nothing nefarious happening?”
Griggs also stated, “If (Joycelyn) is in a consensual loving relationship with R Kelly, she could speak to…her extended family.”
Also on site were Joycelyn’s younger sisters, Jori, 11, and Jailyn, 18.
“I know for a fact my sister is not OK. I know for a fact R Kelly is destroying her. I know he has put a lot of things in her head that not just her family, but the world is out to get her,” said Jailyn, who later added that Joycelyn’s interest in working with Kelly was purely professional, and no different than stars such as Lady Gaga and Keke Palmer who also collaborated with him.
Jori stated that she hasn’t seen Joycelyn in two years.
“It’s heartbreaking,” Jori said, “because I feel like she’s being controlled. At least she could call her family or me for my birthday…Christmas…or go to her grandfather’s funeral.”
Watch the full stream of the press conference here: