R. Kelly's Old Hairdresser Reveals Herself As Formerly Anonymous Accuser In One Of The Singer's Sexual Assault Cases
Lanita Carter may have been the subject of Kelly's 2009 song "Hair Dresser."
March 28, 2019 at 9:14 pm
An anonymous accuser in a recent case against R. Kelly which culminated in 10 counts of aggravated sexual assault has revealed herself as the artist's former hairdresser.
Lanita Carter, who is identified as "L.C." in the February indictment, sat down with CBS This Morning on Thursday to detail her experiences with the alleged abuser.
Carter told CBS News that she always saw her relationship with R. Kelly as professional and began to look at him as a brotherly figure. Carter was hired to braid R. Kelly's hair routinely months before he was indicted on child pornography charges in 2002. At that time, Carter says she had no reason to believe Kelly wasn't the "perfect gentleman."
"I would tell people, 'Pray for him. Pray for him. I do his hair. He is nothing like what they say!'" Carter told reporter Jericka Duncan.
She says she didn't believe Kelly was capable of such crimes until nearly a year and a half later, when he allegedly sexually assaulted her on February 18, 2003, when she was 24 years old.
Carter says she received a phone call that day and was asked to come to do his hair. She alleges that upon her entrance, Kelly propositioned her to massage his head.
"I told him I didn't do massages, I laughed it off," she said. "And I didn't know he was for real. If I could change that day – I wouldn't have been there."
Carter reports that from that moment, Kelly grew more demanding and sexually violent.
"He pulled my braid down by him, and he said, 'Suck it for daddy, suck it for daddy.' And I said, 'No.'"
Kelly allegedly spat on Carter six times, eventually forcing her to perform oral sex, Rolling Stone reports. The assault reportedly carried on until someone knocked on the door and she was able to run to the bathroom.
"He didn't open the door right away," Carter recalled. "He said, 'Fix your face! Fix your motherf**king face!' I knew that it would be my last day there… And I get to the bathroom, and I grabbed a wall and it was a rose-colored towel… I wiped my face…"
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Carter also made it clear that she'd wondered what motivated his behavior, noting that she never attempted any sexual pursuits with him.
"I look at myself in the mirror, like, I'm not a beauty queen," she said. "I didn't perceive myself to be nothing more than just his hair braider."
Carter filed a police report that day with the Chicago Police Department.
She says the investigation found his semen on the Tommy Hilfiger shirt she was wearing at the time of the alleged attack. However, charges were never filed.
"Celebrities are powerful," Carter commented on the lack of response from Shauna Boliker, Chicago's lead sex crimes prosecutor at the time. "Celebrities have support systems. I have no support system outside of my immediate family."
Carter and Kelly have since concluded two separate lawsuits. The first, which occurred ten months after the reported assault, was settled for $650,000. Although Kelly denied any wrongdoing, Carter was contractually bound not to speak on the case.
Nearly five years later, Carter filed another lawsuit against Kelly when he released the song "Hair Braider" in 2009. The song is about a female hairdresser who makes "zig-zag braids," a signature style that Carter says she's known for but never created for the famous crooner. Carter also says the incident happened on his L-shaped couch, which is featured in the song's official video.
Kelly settled with his former hairdresser again for $100,000. With the agreement mentioned above, he denied any wrongdoing yet again, but it was barred from performing or promoting the song.
Carter only decided to speak up after seeing Kelly's purported pattern of alleged assault and hearing the cries of Cook County State Attorney Kimberly Foxx who sought victims' stories.
"I would be going on with my day, you turn on the news, here's another R. Kelly victim, another R. Kelly victim, another R. Kelly victim," Carter said with tears falling down her face. "And you just – you just want to be there for them."
Carter says she was motivated to take her story public after watching the famed R&B singer speak his so-called truth with Gayle King of CBS This Morning earlier this month, as Blavity reported.
"[I] felt like it should be a crime to publicly tell a story… to get on television and lie," Carter said.
"This is a release," Carter added. "I've been carrying this since 2003. I don't want to be in the public. But this is my life… If I die tomorrow, I know that I told the truth."
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