Savage family hopeful after news of R. Kelly investigation

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. — It seems the Lifetime network show "Surviving R. Kelly" has stirred up attention, and may have launched an investigation into the allegations made by several women against the singer.

Last May we talked to the Savage family, a family originally from Memphis who felt helpless in the fight to get their daughter, Joycelyn Savage, back from Kelly's grip.

The family feels hopeful, and that hope is coming from a place of finally seeing some progress towards the justice they've been searching for, for three years.

The family says their attorney Jerald Griggs was contacted by the district attorney's office in Fulton County and told that R. Kelly is now under criminal investigation.

"Now it is finally time to get justice for these girls, not just my sister, but for these girls," said Jailyn Savage, Joycelyn's sister.

It seems it took hearing from countless alleged victims in a six-hour documentary to finally get Fulton County investigators to take a closer look at claims against R. Kelly.

Various victims saying they were held captive inside of Kelly's home and controlled in a cult like manner, brainwashed and abused — allegations that seemed overlooked until now.

"Nobody wasn't paying attention, nobody's eyes were open and now it's like everyone realizes who this monster is."

When we caught up with the Savage family they were headed to CNN headquarters to discuss the new probe into the singer's private life, feeling one step closer to getting Joycelyn back.

"Whether he gets jail time that's not up to me," said Joycelyn's father Timothy Savage. "I just want my daughter back to make sure she is fine and healthy."

The family says this is not the life they had in mind for their daughter when they packed up and moved from Memphis to Atlanta to help her pursue a singing career.

R. Kelly was supposed to help her, not split their family apart.

"For someone like R. Kelly to break up a bond that me and my sister had, it's heartbreaking," Jailyn Savage said. "I'm ready to build the bond back up that we left off at."

The family has faced claims that they knew about Kelly's past and ignored it or knowingly put their daughter in harm's way.

"We never took our daughter to be sold to R. Kelly," Timothy Savage said.

But the family said they knew something wasn't right when Joycelyn stopped attending college, moved in with R.Kelly and cut off communication with them.

They haven't seen her since 2016, and haven't heard from her since 2017.

Even when TMZ caught up with Joycelyn last year in Los Angeles, she denied being held against her will.

The family says they'll keep fighting until Joy is back home with them.

As of right now the family doesn't know where Joycelyn is living. She could be in R. Kelly's hometown of Chicago living with him.

The family says they've made several attempts to find and save Joycelyn but now they are relying on justice to bring her back to them.

WREG reached out to the Fulton County DA's office requesting more information about the investigation. We haven't heard back from them at this time.

According to a report by the Associated Press, R. Kelly's manager is now under criminal investigation after allegedly threatening Timothy Savage and his family over the phone for their involvement in the documentary.

Timothy Savage told an officer on Thursday that Kelly's manager, Don Russell, had texted him, saying it would be best for him and his family if the documentary did not air. The police report says Russell called Savage while an officer was present, and Savage put him on speaker. The report says Russell accused Savage of lying to Lifetime and said if Savage continued to support the documentary, Russell and Kelly would release information that would ruin Savage, his business and his family.

Russell could not be reached for comment. The case has been forwarded to the criminal investigations division for review.

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