R. Kelly Is Suing His Prison After Being Placed On Suicide Watch



R. Kelly is suing the Metropolitan Detention Center Brooklyn, where he’s been jailed since being sentenced to 30 years in federal prison earlier this week.
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The 55-year-old musician was placed on suicide watch after being sentenced to 30 years in prison for federal racketeering and sex trafficking charges on Wednesday (June 29).

The ruling comes after a jury found him guilty of racketeering and violations of an anti-sex-trafficking law after hearing testimonies from 45 witnesses in a Brooklyn courtroom last year.


Kelly's lawyer, Jennifer Bonjean, revealed to People in a statement on Friday (July 1) that the reason why her client is on suicide watch is for "purely punitive reasons" because he's a "high-profile inmate".

Now, the singer, whose real name is Robert Sylvester Kelly, is suing the Brooklyn detention center, claiming he's not suicidal, and that it is a "cruel and unusual punishment," according to court documents obtained by the publication.
Credit: Tribune Content Agency LLC / Alamy.
The 'Ignition' singer's lawyer said to the outlet: "MDC has a policy of placing high profile individuals under the harsh conditions of suicide watch whether they are suicidal or not (this was done recently with Ghislaine Maxwell)."

"MDC Brooklyn is being run like a gulag. My partner and I spoke with Mr. Kelly following his sentencing, he expressed that he was mentally fine and ONLY expressed concern that even though he was NOT suicidal, MDC would place him on suicide watch (as they did following the guilty verdict)," she added. "We have just sued MDC Brooklyn."

Bonjean argued in the court documents that suicide watch is a severe state of imprisonment that "can and does cause serious mental harm" to a non-suicidal inmate.

"Inmates are stripped of their clothing and underwear and dressed in a smock made of material that is akin to the material that moving companies use when wrapping furniture," the complaint alleges, adding that inmates are "typically placed in a single cell without bed rails and offered no items of comfort."


"They cannot shower or shave and are sometimes not even [afford] toilet paper. Meals are not provided with utensils, forcing inmates to eat with their hands. They have no ability to consult with loved ones or supportive figures," the complaint claims.

"And of course, they are monitored 24-7 by prison officials. Ironically, individuals on 'suicide watch' don't even receive psychiatric care," the complaint added.
Credit: Tribune Content Agency LLC / Alamy.
A representative for the Bureau of Prisons disclosed to People that they could not comment directly about Kelly's imprisonment or conditions of confinement for any inmate.

"The BOP is committed to ensuring the safety and security of all inmates in our population, our staff, and the public. Humane treatment of the men and women in our custody is a top priority. The BOP does not comment on pending litigation or matters that are the subject of legal proceedings," the statement read.




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