R. Kelly Juror Has Panic Attack During Closing Arguments, Is Now Being Replaced
UPDATE (Sept. 13):
The U.S. District Attorney's Office has confirmed to XXL that a juror who had a panic attack has been replaced.
ORIGINAL STORY (Sept. 12):
A juror in R. Kelly's Chicago federal sex crimes trial reportedly had a panic attack during the closing arguments and will be replaced by an alternate juror.
On Monday (Sept. 12), the closing arguments of R. Kelly's second trial in two years took place at Dirksen Federal Courthouse in Chicago. According to multiple reporters who were present in court, one of the 12 jurors had a panic attack during the session and was excused from being a part of the dozen who decide the final verdict.
Chicago Tribune journalist Jason Meisner reports the excused juror works for a library and appears to be in her 30s. The juror said she had not seen the Surviving R. Kelly docuseries but had heard headlines about the disgraced crooner. It appears the whole trial has taken a toll on the woman.
"//BREAKING/// One of the #RKelly jurors is having a panic attack and doesn't believe she can continue, the judge says," Meisner reported. "Judge says it's juror No. 44, who works for a public library. The 7th juror selected. 'My inclination is to excuse her,' Leinenweber says."
"[Judge] Leinenweber says the juror reported that she doesn't think 'she can go on one minute more' and that waiting overnight would not help," Meisner reported. "She'd be replaced by an alternate, Juror No. 83, a male white, 60ish."
This is R. Kelly's second sex crime-related trial in a year and follows him being sentenced to 30 years in prison in his New York federal sex crimes case after being found guilty of racketeering and sex trafficking charges last year.
This current case revolves around alleged sex tapes involving the singer and underage girls. During the trial, the jury was subject to watching multiple sex tapes that were said to feature young girls. It is unclear if this contributed to the juror's reaction.
XXL has reached out to the Assistant U.S. District Attorney for comment.