One of R. Kelly’s former girlfriends is speaking out about her nine years of hell with the singer, and revealing the alleged abuse she suffered at his hands during the relationship.
26-year-old Dominique Gardner spoke to reporter Jim DeRogatis for an interview in The New Yorker, and detailed her relationship with Kelly. Gardner was featured in the Lifetime docu-series, “Surviving R. Kelly,” which showcased her mother rescuing the girl from an L.A. area hotel.
During her time with Kelly, Gardner says Kelly imposed a strict set of rules that came with harsh consequences for violations. She claims the R&B singer would spank, slap and beat her for not following the rules, and also regularly whipped her with an extension cord. Gardner recalled one fight that ended with Kelly allegedly yanking out patches of her hair.
Still, the woman does not regret her time with Kelly, and said, “I loved him to death, you know what I’m sayin’? But he needs help. Who doesn’t need help?”
Gardner, who lived with Kelly along with Joycelyn Savage and Azriel Clary, has a permanent reminder of her relationship with the singer in a pair of tattoos she received of his face on her leg and rib cage.
She also does not believe Kelly deserves a harsh punishment in his criminal case, believing house arrest and therapy are better options than prison.