Child welfare investigators have reopened an investigation of the parents
whose daughter is at the center of last week's sex-tape indictments against
The Illinois Department of Children and Family Services said Monday (June
10) that it has renewed its probe into whether the teenage girl's parents
allowed her to have sex with the singer (see "R. Kelly Arrested On 21 Counts Of Child Pornography"),
thereby subjecting her to risk or harm.
"Our involvement is only tangentially to Robert Kelly," said DCFS Deputy
Director John Goad. "Our interest is more seeing after the safety of the
children, whether they suffered abuse or neglect at the hands of those
responsible to their care."
DCFS had investigated the girl's parents twice prior to the indictments
once in 2000 and again in 2001. Both investigations were prompted by
calls to the department's hotline, but both stalled because they didn't have
enough evidence. Goad couldn't comment on the information given in those
calls, and he wouldn't say whether they were anonymous tips.
"If someone makes a report and there's reasonable cause, then we do conduct
an investigation," he said. "But we had virtually no evidence."
And the second time the investigation was opened, the girl and her parents
denied her involvement with the singer, Goad said. Now, with the indictments
and the videotape itself, the investigation has been reactivated and given
Should the DCFS find that the parents allowed their daughter to have sexual
relations with Kelly, they risk losing custody of the girl and any siblings
she may have.
"There's no connection to what we would find and any criminal charges," Goad
explained, "but we do see to the safety of the child. And if there is
evidence of child abuse and neglect, we take custody of the child and then
go to court. And we do consider all of the children in the family in the
event that there are siblings."
The daughter, who Chicago police say was 14 at the time of the tape, is said
to be 17 now.
For a feature interview with R. Kelly discussing the
accusations against him, see
HREF="/bands/r/r_kelly/news_feature_051302/index.jhtml">"R. Kelly: In His Own Words."
HREF="/bands/r/r_kelly/news_feature_051302/index.jhtml">"R. Kelly: In His
For full coverage of the R. Kelly sex tape scandal,
see The R. Kelly