A Patreon subscription account accusing R. Kelly of abuse and manipulation purported to be run by one of his girlfriends, Joycelyn Savage, was shut down after its owner failed to verify Savage’s identity.
Last Friday, an Instagram account allegedly belonging to Savage posted the message, “There’s something I need to reveal, something I should’ve talked about a long time ago. This is my story!” It was the account’s first post in more than two years. The unverified Instagram account — which first posted days after Savage was mentioned as a woman in Kelly’s alleged sex cult in July 2017 but remained dormant since — subsequently posted a link to a recently created Patreon account, in which the author, claiming to be Savage, wrote that she would post “daily chapters of my story.”
“Things I am going to reveal that was sweared not to see the day of light — by NDA,” the account wrote. “I am risking my life for many others. This story is 18+ and only for mature audience, I want to make sure my story is very detailed as I can remember.” Attempts to reach Savage were unsuccessful.
In the first post, the author said she was a “victim” of Kelly’s and reiterated claims of abuse and intimidation that many of Kelly’s ex-girlfriends have alleged. “After these couple of months, Robert started giving me commands, and making sure I call him by certain names,” the account wrote. “Like ‘Master’ or ‘Daddy’ which I didn’t really care for at the time. If I wasn’t getting paid or pursuing my dream I would’ve went home, but all of that didn’t stop just yet. But It started getting worse by day by day, he would raise his voice at me if I didn’t call him by those two names. If Robert called me I would have to reply with ‘Yes, daddy’ or ‘Please daddy’ he was so controlling.”
A subsequent post claimed the singer choked her and “[kept] me locked up like some damn animal.”
Patreon was alerted to the possible impersonation on Saturday, one day after the account went live, and immediately tried to confirm Savage’s identity via an email address provided to the site when the page was created. While the site did converse with a person associated with the account, the author was unable to provide the proof of identification as requested by Patreon.
On Tuesday afternoon, Patreon shuttered the account after it was unable to authenticate that Savage, who had yet to post any video evidence that she was behind the posts, was the author. “After multiple unsuccessful attempts to verify the identity of the account holder, we closed the Patreon page allegedly associated with Joycelyn Savage due to potential impersonation,” a rep for the site said in a statement to Rolling Stone. “All patrons who signed up for the membership page were refunded and the creator did not receive any funds.”
Gerald Griggs, an attorney for Savage’s parents, implored law enforcement to intervene in the situation. “The recent statement from Patreon underscores the family concern for the safety of their daughter Joycelyn,” Griggs tells Rolling Stone. “Numerous allegations made by the account were alarming and confirmed details from our independent investigation, [though] we also unsuccessfully reached out to the account. With the potential dangers facing Joycelyn and her safety, we are asking for law enforcement to get involved in determining where Joycelyn is and whom is really behind the account that detailed potential crimes.”
Kelly’s criminal defense attorney, Steve Greenberg, did not reply to a request for comment. After Greenberg initially tweeted a statement criticizing Savage on Saturday, he later acknowledged that the veracity of the Instagram had come under question, tweeting, “We have looked into it and cannot confirm that the Instagram account in question is Joycelyn.”
“It is unfortunate that Jocelyn now seeks to make money by exploiting her longtime, loving relationship with Robert,” Greenberg said in a statement to Variety that appeared to legitimize the account. “Obviously, if she were to tell the truth, no one would pay, so she has, unfortunately, chosen to regurgitate the stories and lies told by others for her own personal profit. We know the real facts, and it was not until the money ran out that she decided anything was wrong. Hopefully people will see it for the obvious profiteering it is.” Both Greenberg’s tweeted statement and his follow-up tweet stating he “cannot confirm” whether it is really Savage’s Instagram have since been deleted.
Savage was often seen by Kelly’s side along with the singer’s other girlfriend, Azriel Clary, during his recent court appearances in Chicago. Kelly is facing numerous felonies in both Chicago and New York on child pornography, sexual assault, obstruction of justice, and racketeering charges. In 2017, Savage spoke to TMZ and claimed she was not being held against her will. “I’m in a happy place with my life. I’m not being brainwashed or anything like that,” she said. “I am totally fine.”
Savage and Clary defended their relationship with Kelly to CBS’ Gayle King in March, and said they were in love with the singer. “Our parents are out here to get money and scam because they didn’t agree with what happened with music or whatever it could be,” Savage said at the time. “They’re very upset.”