Closing arguments in the R. Kelly child porn case will give the jurors plenty to think about — sex and celebrity, video technology and dermatology, moles and morphing.
But in a trial that has seen its share of bizarre sideshows, the jury's decision will come down to sorting out a few simple facts, according to legal experts.
“It’s not a complicated case," said Leonard Cavise, a professor at the DePaul University College of Law. "You either thinks it’s her and it’s him [on the tape], or you’re done."
Closing arguments are set to begin Thursday morning at 10 a.m. in the courtroom of Judge Vincent Gaughan, where over the past four weeks jurors have listened to testimony by turns salacious and boring. It is up to the prosecutors and defense lawyers to sort through that testimony and hit the points favorable to their case.
Sam Adam Jr. is expected to do the defense's closing argument, sources said. Both Shauna Boliker and Robert Heilingoetter will likely argue for the prosecution, which gets a chance to rebut the defense's closing argument.
Prosecutors will likely emphasize the numerous witnesses who identified the allegedly underage girl on the tape and identified the man as Kelly, experts said. Those witnesses included relatives of the girl, her childhood friends, even her former basketball coach.
Prosecutors can be expected to argue the videotape is real and not the product of digital fakery — and that a dark spot on the male's back matches a mole on Kelly's back. They might also point out that the background on the tape matches photographs of the "log cabin room" in a North Side house Kelly once owned.