Azriel Clary’s mother and father are Angelo and Alice Clary. The Clary’s daughter, Azriel, has been “trapped” in a relationship with R. Kelly, they allege, though Azriel has maintained in a recent CBS interview that she’s happy and there of her own volition.
In a Facebook live video with motivational speaker, Angelo and Alice Clary maintained that her daughter met Kelly when she was underage, and he promised to help her with her music career. They say they haven’t seen her in person since 2016.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Alice Clary on Searching for Her Daughter: ‘I’m Never Going to Stop’
To local Florida news affiliate News Channel 8, Alice said that she initially didn’t support the idea of her daughter going on tour alone with Kelly, regardless of what type of opportunity it was for her as a singer. “Literally, [as] soon as she turned 18, it was like, communication started dying and dwindling,” Alice said.
Alice explained how much of an effort she and her husband have made to get their daughter back. “We have lived in different states, we have traveled to concerts, we have been to the studios and been to his old houses,” Alice said.
In an emotional plea, Alice said, “I’m never going to stop. To the day I die.”
Alice later told News Channel 8 that she had attended a local Tampa concert for Kelly, and when she tried to grab her daughter off of the stage, she was taken away in handcuffs.
2. The Clary Family Say They Haven’t Heard From Clary Since 2016
The Clary family say they haven’t seen their daughter since 2016. This is also true of Joycelyn Savage’s family, who also say they haven’t spoken to their daughter in person in years.
Of the last time she saw her daughter, Jonjelyn Savage said to BuzzFeed, “It was as if she was brainwashed. [She] looked like a prisoner — it was horrible. I hugged her and hugged her. But she just kept saying she’s in love and [Kelly] is the one who cares for her. I don’t know what to do. I hope that if I get her back, I can get her treatment for victims of cults. They can reprogram her. But I wish I could have stopped it from happening.”
3. Angelo & Alice Clary Have Mixed Feelings About the Lifetime Documentary Surviving R. Kelly
With Jay Morrison on Facebook, the Clarys shared their mixed feelings on the recent Lifetime documentary, Surviving R. Kelly. To Morrison, who is a motivational speaker, Angelo Clary said, “I love Lifetime for the platform they gave us to give awareness to bring this to an end. But they have no clue how much we went through. They have no clue what I did to help my family.”
Alice pointed out that there was a huge benefit to the documentary, regardless of what it missed out on: “[‘Surviving R. Kelly’] is getting the authorities — which we’ve for years been trying to do — finally on it. It’s getting the victims finally on it. We’ve been fighting this fight.”
Angelo and Alice Clary also pointed out that the documentary didn’t mention any of the details about their daughter’s apparent mental health issues, explaining that Azriel has had suicidal tendencies in the past.
4. Clary Has Accused Her Parents of Encouraging Her to Take ‘Sexual Videos’ With Kelly
In an interview with CBS’ Gayle King on March 6, Clary and Savage both alleged that their parents had financial motivations for bringing attention to their relationships to Kelly.
Clary said in part that her parents had told her to lie about being underage to Kelly, and to even take “sexual videos” with him in order to extort him for money later. Clary said to King, “When I was 17, my parents were actually making me, trying to get me to take photos with him, take sexual videos with him, all kinds of stuff. And they said because if they ever have to blackmail him, what they’re trying to do now, they can use it against him, which is exactly what they’re doing.”
In response to those claims, Angelo and Alice Clary released a statement via their lawyer, Michael Avenatti:
“Azriel Clary is presently suffering from years of mental abuse and manipulation by R. Kelly. Sadly, like so many girls before them, Azriel and Joycelyn Savage have been manipulated and convinced by Kelly to protect him from serious criminal charges. Azriel’s parents never attempted to blackmail anyone and never suggested their daughter take nude photos or sexual videos. And they have never asked R. Kelly for a single penny. These are absolute lies fabricated by R. Kelly and we have evidence to show that these claims are bogus.”
5. The Savage Family Spoke to Savage for the First Time in Two Years on Tuesday
On March 6, a recording of the Savage family speaking to Joycelyn for the first time in years was released by CBS reporter Adam Harding. In the video above, Savage can be heard repeatedly telling her family that she was happy.
At several points, Jori leans forward to say, “I love you,” to her sister, and to ask her to come home.
Though her mother asks her more than once how they’re supposed to believe that she’s happy when she hasn’t spoken to them or visited them at all, Savage dodges the questions, repeatedly saying she’s happy before letting them know she has to go.