R Kelly's interview was "awful": Crisis expert weighs in on singer's weepy tv spot

Ronn Torossian, CEO of 5WPR, a leading crisis management PR firm, exclusively told MEA WorldWide (MEAWW) the interview did Kelly more harm than good


                            R Kelly's interview was "awful": Crisis expert weighs in on singer's weepy tv spot

Breaking his silence, embattled R&B singer R. Kelly gave his first interview since his arrest last month on the charges of sexual abuse, and his yelling and accusations did not fare well with the general public opinion, according to a crisis management expert.

"Frankly, this seemed like a last-ditch effort to sway public opinion. R. Kelly’s aggressiveness during his interview did way more harm than good," Ronn Torossian CEO of 5WPR, a leading crisis PR firm whose clients have included Sean “Diddy” Combs, Nick Cannon, Pitbull and Snoop Dogg, exclusively told MEA WorldWide (MEAWW).

"His actions portrayed him as desperate and distraught, not apologetic at all as he raised his voice repeatedly. That was not a smart approach as he tried to 'redeem' himself. The public already sees him as this aggressive and awful guy—and now he has further solidified that image," Torossian added.

Ronn Torossian (Media handout)
Ronn Torossian (Media handout)

On Wednesday, CBS News' Gayle King pressed him on the allegations that have followed the singer for years and he ended up blaming scorned women and social media for his troubles. "You can start a rumor on a guy like me or a celebrity, just like that," Kelly answered, adding, "all you have to do is push a button on your phone and say, 'so and so did this to me, R. Kelly did this to me,' and if you get any traction from that, if you're able to write a book from that, if you're able to get a reality show then any girl that I had a relationship in the past, that it just didn't work out, can come and say the same thing."

Trying to explain the claims made in the Lifetime docuseries, 'Surviving R. Kelly,' the singer said; "Everybody says something bad about me." Kelly added, "Nobody said nothing good. They were describing Lucifer. I’m not Lucifer, I’m a man. I make mistakes, but I’m not a devil, and by no means am I a monster."

According to PR expert Torossian, Kelly looked "awful," in the interview. "R. Kelly is using the court of public opinion to try and influence the court of law. He is looking to influence a jury with this interview, and even though he looked awful, remember that judges and juries read papers too."

Suggesting another way to prove his innocence, instead of raising his voice to prove a point, Torossian said, "not to mention, there’s a really simple way to prove his innocence in the court of public opinion – how about a lie detector test?"

In this handout provided by the Chicago Police Department, Robert Kelly (R. Kelly) poses for a mugshot after his arrest on February 22, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. Kelly was arrested on 10 counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse (Getty Images)
In this handout provided by the Chicago Police Department, Robert Kelly (R. Kelly) poses for a mugshot after his arrest on February 22, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. Kelly was arrested on 10 counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse (Getty Images)

If the 52-year-old singer is proved innocent in court, he will still have to change how he is perceived in the public eye, just like Michael Jackson. Torossian concluded the quote likening him to the King of Pop and added, "it’s up in the air whether or not R. Kelly will have a similar fate."