It seems the purported victim's family in the R. Kelly sex tape case is having difficulty doing what Jimi Hendrix and Meg White fans were able to do in only a few hours: determining whether or not they know the person in the sex video.
Lead attorney Edward Genson starts things off by calling a cousin, an aunt, and an uncle of the alleged victim, all of whom declare unequivocally that their relative is not Sex-Tape Girl. (All three also acknowledge that they hadn't seen the video until this week—a reminder of the many prosecution witnesses who, the defense has argued, were certain that the alleged victim was on the tape before ever having seen it.) Charlotte Edwards, the girl's aunt, says that the young woman in the video has much larger breasts than the alleged victim. Genson, perhaps rusty when it comes to questioning nonhostile witnesses, follows up by asking Charlotte if she'd ever seen her niece naked—the same question he used to undermine witnesses who claimed they were 100 percent sure they could identify the girl. Charlotte, unperturbed or unaware of Genson's mistake, responds straight-facedly that she had indeed seen her relative's nude torso, "when I used to change her diapers."
In contrast to Genson, state's attorney Shauna Boliker performs flawlessly. After a few perfunctory questions to the day's first witness, the alleged victim's cousin Shonna Edwards, she begins the show-and-tell portion of the cross-examination. On a giant screen 10 feet from the jury box, the state displays a screenshot from a video put out by the alleged victim's music group. Shonna identifies her cousin and band mate immediately. A few seconds later, we see a still from the 27-minute sex tape—if memory serves, it's taken from the very beginning, as Sex-Tape Girl is about to receive a handful of bills from Sex-Tape Man. Shonna says that she doesn't recognize that person. Boliker then has the photos displayed side by side. Both are profile shots, showing the left side of the alleged victim's face, her mullet, and a slightly puffy cheek. They look the same. "Is it possible that it could be the same individual?" Boliker asks. "Not at all," Shonna says. Boliker doesn't accuse her of lying or covering for her kin. She asks no further questions, eager to get the next witness on the stand—another opportunity to put the pair of poster-sized photos in front of the jury.
Granted, there's a lot at stake if one of the actors is indeed underage, but what's the hold-up in identification? Seems like the gist of the case—the accusation of child pornography—is getting lost in the maze that is Kelly's extensive list of associates.
For more on Kelly's history of doing things that everybody disapproves of, click here.