The latest lawyer enlisted by R. Kelly to defend him from charges of underage sex abuse has a long history of prosecuting sex crimes, making her either a curious or strategic choice of attorneys for the disgraced singer. Nicole Blank Becker led the sex crimes unit for the Macomb County Prosecutor’s Office in Michigan for more than a decade until she went into private practice this year, the Detroit Free Press reported. She was at least the sixth lawyer retained by Kelly despite his insistence that he is broke.
But perhaps more interesting than who was funding R. Kelly’s defense was the fact that Blank Becker, who has been primarily defending accused sex criminals since last year, said she believes the singer is innocent of the 10 counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse four people have accused him of.
“Everyone I defend is not guilty,” Blank Becker told the Free Press in a Q & A published Monday.
While she said she “cannot speak about the facts of the case at all,” Blank Becker did confirm that Kelly was working on new music. She also said she saw “Surviving R. Kelly,” the docu-series that aired on the Lifetime cable network and resulted in a renewed interest in allegations of child sex abuse that have dogged the singer for more than 20 years.
“I found it disturbing and I strongly support victims of abuse coming forward,” Blank Becker said of the docuseries. BUT, she added, “Having met Robert, after the show aired, there are definitely three sides to every story and the public at this point had only heard one.”
That was a point she mentioned on her personal blog when she announced the news that she was being added to the case.
“We really do live in a world where the media does shape opinion,” Blank Becker wrote. “This is a case of a person being tried in the media before he gets a trial date. Part of my role is to bring knowledge to the public. So far, only one side has gotten to the public.”
Throughout the Free Press Q & A, Blank Becker consistently tries to humanize Kelly, who stands accused of doing some very inhuman things, to put it mildly.
“Robert happens to be a very intelligent, passionate and talented guy,” she insisted. “Robert is human, he has his bad days, but for the most part he is working on his albums and thankful for his fans.”
Blank Becker used similar terms to describe the singer’s meltdown while being interviewed by Gayle King, during which he said his accusers were lying, denied having sex with his then-wife, singer Aaliyah, who was 15-years-old when they got married illegally in the 90s, and got up and screamed at King through sobs claiming his innocence.
“I consider the Robert Kelly that the world saw on (Gayle) King was a human outburst of emotion,” Blank Becker said. “ Robert has been ostracized, blackballed and unable to work in order to support his children and himself. He finally got to the point where his emotions took over. We have all experienced a moment of breaking down, but typically during those delicate moments the whole world is not watching.”
Read the full Q & A in the Detroit Free Press by clicking here.