Singer JoJo has heaped praise on the women coming forward with sexual assault allegations against R. Kelly, revealing she heard all about the R&B star's reputation when she was starting out at the age of 12.
Like many, the young star has been gripped by Lifetime's six-part Surviving R. Kelly documentary series, which debuted in America last week (ends04Jan19), and following the Saturday night finale, she took to Twitter to share her thoughts on the show.
"Many of these stories I was hearing when I, myself, was wayyyy underage," she writes. "Making my first album at 12 and then 14/15. I was a HUGEEEEE R Kelly fan, came from a broken home, had daddy issues, and wondered... how did these girls get chosen? I wondered if I could/would be."
She then thanked her mother always being by her side until she turned 18 - and never letting her work with Kelly, even though JoJo "begged" her to reconsider.
"(She never let me) get too close to predatory men who wanted to do god-knows-what to me," she adds. "If I didn't have her, I could have easily (have) fallen victim to someone..."
She completed her tweet session by paying tribute to the women who came forward for the documentary, adding: "I feel DEEPLY for these COURAGEOUS QUEENS who come forward and in some cases risk their lives 2share their story & let others know they’re not alone!!!!"
Actress Jada Pinkett Smith was also watching Surviving R. Kelly carefully, and on Sunday (06Jan19) she posted a video message online, blasting those who have rushed out to buy Kelly's music in light of the series.
"So I got an article this morning about how R.Kelly's music sales have spiked... substantially since the release of Surviving R. Kelly... and I'm having a really hard time understanding why," she said, urging her fans to help her to understand "what I'm missing".
"I really don't wanna believe it's because black girls don't matter enough."
Jada promised to address the R. Kelly documentary and all the reactions to it during a Facebook Live chat on Wednesday (09Jan19).
The hard-hitting series investigates claims of assault, violence, and underaged sex, which have been lodged against the R&B star over many years.
Kelly has maintained the allegations are all false and he has threatened to sue Lifetime bosses for airing the documentary.