Politician and Democrat lawmaker, Danny K. Davis (D-Ill.) has retracted comments he made this week suggesting R&B singer, R. Kelly could be “welcomed back” by the city of Chicago following his conviction in a wide-ranging sex trafficking case.
In an interview, on a video which was obtained and published by TMZ, Davis was heard saying:
“As an artist, one who is gifted, I think he’ll be welcomed back into Chicago as a person who can be redeemed. You know I’m a big believer in what is called second chances. So, it all will really depend upon him”.
Davis, who represents a large number of Kelly’s hometown of Chicago in the lower chamber, said on the video that R Kelly should attempt to find “peace with his maker, peace with himself and reconcile with the universe for the acts that he may have committed”.
The Act, Davis was referring to, is called ‘Second Chance Probation’, a form of probation that, according to reports, “gives judges the option to sentence certain first-time, non-violent offenders to probation without having a felony conviction on their record”.
However, a defendant charged with a crime of violence, or a sex offense is not eligible. Therefore, in Kelly’s case, he would not be eligible.
Several people didn’t seem happy with the Congressman’s remarks as they severely backlashed him. Among the key people who slammed Danny Davis is Kina Collins, a Democratic primary challenger to Davis, who has held his seat since 1996. Mrs Collins blasting the congressman for the remarks in a statement said:
“Congressman Davis’ statement was thoughtless, distasteful, and incredibly disappointing for a man charged with representing thousands of Black women and girls in our district.
“I’m shocked that my Congressman would choose today of all days to focus on second chances for a serial abuser rather than uplifting survivors. Second chances for those reentering communities from prison are critical. But by holding R. Kelly, a man who leveraged his wealth and power to evade justice and harm Black girls, as an example of what second chances look like, Davis is undermining the broader fight for justice”.
Following the backlash, Davis in an interview attempted to clarify his comments on how Kelly would be viewed by the city of Chicago after his conviction.
“Kelly has been accused of criminal acts, gone through a court of law, been convicted, and must serve whatever time the court decides”.
Davis in a statement further noted “Yes, he has lived in Chicago, I am a law and order policymaker; therefore, I am focused on trying to arrest the coronavirus, raising the debt limit, passing a budget, maintaining and rebuilding our infrastructure, feeding the hungry, meeting the health needs, taking care of children, and improving the quality of life for all. Women and children must be respected and protected at all times and at all costs.”
Kelly was convicted on all charges against him on Monday in a sex trafficking trial that lasted a month during which several victims detailed abuse they suffered from him. The popular 1990s singer and songwriter faces decades in prison when he is sentenced.
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