On Monday, Darrell Johnson stepped down as the crisis manager of jailed R. Kelly after making controversial comments during an interview with CBS about not leaving his daughter alone with someone accused of pedophilia.
Johnson chopped it up with Gayle King on “CBS This Morning” and gave an update on the embattled R&B star, but he also revealed personal thoughts about Kelly that shocked some people.
Even though Johnson shows concern for Kelly in the interview, he apparently is not blinded by Kelly’s fame and makes it clear that he would NEVER leave his 20-year-old daughter alone with the embattled artist.
“Absolutely not. I wouldn’t leave my daughter with anybody that’s accused of pedophilia. Period.”
King then asks why he continues to work with the alleged sexual abuser.
“You’re defending R. Kelly but at the same time, saying you wouldn’t leave your own daughter with him?”
Interestingly, all Johnson would say was … “I wouldn’t leave my daughter with anyone… I’ll say it again (anyone) that’s accused of being a pedophile.”
Following his conversation with King, Johnson told USA Today that he “should have worded it better,” adding that he meant to say, “I would leave my daughter with Kelly because I do not believe he is a pedophile.”
Johnson then confirmed he no longer works for Kelly as a crisis manager or spokesperson. “This has nothing to do with Mr. Kelly it’s for my (own) person(al) reasons,” he said in a statement to USA TODAY.
During his conversation with Gayle King on Monday, Johnson noted that Kelly is not doing well in custody.
“I am concerned about Mr. Kelly,” he told King in the interview, saying that he would “assume at this point” that Kelly is under suicide watch.
Kelly has been held without bond at the federal Metropolitan Correctional Center in Chicago, after being arrested July 11 on indictments by the Northern District of Illinois and the Eastern District of New York.
“I’ve heard (statements) that he’s happy that this is going on, that he wanted to be at this particular place (solitary confinement). That’s absolutely not true,” Johnson said. “Nobody wants to be locked down for 24 hours, no TV. He can’t read and write, so he can’t read a book. It’s almost like a jury has already convicted him.”
Steve Greenberg, who heads Kelly’s legal team in Chicago, has confirmed that Johnson is taking “some time off,” but thanked him for his “tireless assistance,” saying in a statement posted to Twitter that the defense “looks forward to his return,” (see his statement via Twitter embed above).
R. Kelly will appear in federal court in Brooklyn next month to face new sex crime charges. Federal prosecutors in Illinois and New York have hit the musician with a combined 18 counts including child pornography.