The guilty verdict immediately sparked questions about the future of Kelly’s celebrated body of work and reignited debates over whether art and artist can be separated by the public.
For his part, Davis (D-Ill.) believes that there could be a future for the star in Chicago.
R. Kelly was found guilty on all counts after his racketeering and sex trafficking trial. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast, File)
Kelly had been accused of scheming to keep people under his influence and force them to commit sexual acts. (AP Newsroom)
Born in Chicago, R. Kelly is known for his prolific R&B career, including the super-hit ‘I Believe I Can Fly.’ (Frank Micelotta/Invision/AP, File)
“As an artist, one who’s gifted, I think he’ll be welcomed back into Chicago as a person who can be redeemed,” the politician told TMZ. “I’m a big believer in what is called second chances.”
He then made note of The Second Chance Act, which he championed in 2007. The Act helps to provide opportunities for jobs, housing and more for former inmates.
“It really will all depend upon him,” Davis said.
When asked what he’d tell Kelly if given the opportunity, Davis said: “Try and find peace with the Maker and peace with himself and reconcile with the universe for the acts that he may have committed.”
Kelly was found guilty on one count of racketeering including 14 underlying acts of sexual exploitation of a child, kidnapping, bribery, and sex trafficking charges. Charges went back more than two decades.
Rep. Danny Davis said R. Kelly ‘can be redeemed.’ (Getty Images)
Kelly was also charged with eight violations of the Mann Act, which makes it illegal to transport anyone across state lines “for any immoral purpose.”
He has denied any wrongdoing.
He will be sentenced on Wednesday, May 4, 2022, and faces a mandatory minimum sentence of 10 years in prison, but could receive up to a life sentence.
The Associated Press and Fox News’ Jessica Napoli contributed to this report