On Thursday, TMZ published a preview of Dash’s interview from Surviving R. Kelly Part II: The Reckoning — the upcoming follow-up to Lifetime’s bombshell documentary series about Kelly, 52, who is currently incarcerated and facing charges of sex-trafficking, sexual assault and child pornography spread throughout Brooklyn, Chicago and Minneapolis.
“Aaliyah was like the sacrificial lamb for all that, bro, because she didn’t deserve none of that,” Dash, 48, said in the clip. “Good soul, good girl, and wasn’t even really so resentful — like, ‘Let that man live, but keep him the f— away from me.’ That’s all she wanted, she was just happy to be away.”
In 1994 it was widely reported that Kelly (born Robert Sylvester Kelly) and Aaliyah had secretly gotten married. News outlets made public a marriage certificate that listed Aaliyah’s age as 18, though she would have been 15 at the time. Meanwhile, Kelly was 27 at the time.
Kelly and Aaliyah never addressed the reports about the nature of their relationship, but in Surviving R. Kelly, Kelly’s former personal assistant Demetrius Smith claimed he was present at the wedding and admitted to obtaining false documents for underaged Aaliyah.
Last month, Kelly pleaded not guilty to a recent federal charge accusing him of bribing an Illinois government employee to issue Aaliyah a fake ID, so that he could legally marry her, according to multiple outlets.
The new bribery allegation against Kelly expanded on the existing indictment brought against him in the summer of 2019.
In the new Surviving R. Kelly Part II: The Reckoning clip, Dash — who met Aaliyah in 2000 and dated her until she died in a plane crash in 2001 at the age of 22 — said he knew “the whole story.”
“I know it was the cover-up and all of that, but how does that cover it up?” he said. “It just made the conversation less crazy, like, ‘Oh, he married a child.'”
“That was a headline, that was like, a rumor,” he continued. “That was something talked about like it was normal. It wasn’t like, ‘Ew, disgusting, you married a 13-year-old.’ It was like, ‘Oh you married Aaliyah?’ She’s 13.”
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When the interviewer corrected the Roc-A-Fella Records founder in the clip to tell him that Aaliyah was 15 — not 13 — at the time she married Kelly, Dash responded, “Yeah, but 15 is 13, man.”
“I don’t have to be accurate because I don’t care,” he added. “15, 13, anything under 18 is disgusting. She was a child.”
Previously, Dash told Hip Hop Motivation in a January 2019 interview that Aaliyah “couldn’t” talk about her relationship with Kelly and would leave it at, “That dude was a bad man.”
“I didn’t really wanna know what he did to the extent that I might feel the need … to deal with it,” he said. “Just ‘cause that’s what a man does. But it just was so much hurt for her to revisit it. It was like, ‘I wouldn’t even wanna revisit it without a professional.’ Whatever got done was terrible.”
Kelly has maintained his innocence throughout his legal troubles.
In June, Kelly pleaded not guilty to 11 felony sexual abuse counts after he was charged by Cook County prosecutors in Chicago in May. The charges included five counts of aggravated criminal sexual assault, stemming from one accuser who claimed Kelly abused her in 2009 and 2010 while she was underage.
A month later, the singer was arrested again and indicted on federal charges including child pornography, racketeering and obstruction of justice in both Illinois and New York, indictment documents and his lawyer confirmed.
He has remained jailed since being denied bail.
Then in August, Kelly was charged with two sex crimes in Minnesota after allegedly paying a teen girl $200 to dance nude back in 2001.
Kelly is scheduled to face trial in federal court in Chicago this April for charges of child pornography and obstruction of justice, according to the Associated Press, before standing trial in Brooklyn in May.
Surviving R. Kelly Part II: The Reckoning, airing in three parts on Jan. 2, 3 and 4, will examine the impact of the original series, which was first broadcast in January 2019. In addition, it will also provide an update on the lengthy list of R. Kelly‘s legal battles, which have spread across multiple states.
The follow-up docuseries will feature several women who came forward in the original, including Jerhonda Pace and Kitti Jones, as well as figures like investigative journalist Jim DeRogatis, State’s Attorney for Cook County Kimberly Foxx, #MeToo Founder Tarana Burke and Michael Avenatti — a lawyer who represents a number of Kelly’s accusers.