Atlanta news crew targeted outside R. Kelly studio, station says

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The keys to a CBS Atlanta affiliate rental car were stolen late Sunday outside R. Kelly’s studio on the Near West Side, according to a reporter at the station.

The theft occurred to the CBS 46 investigative team as the news crew attempted to film a person believed to be Kelly exiting the studio, tweeted Jonathan Carlson, the station’s chief investigative reporter.

At 11:50 p.m., a male got out of a black SUV and stole the keys from a 2018 Chevy Malibu in the 200 block of North Justine, according to Chicago police. The SUV fled south on Justine Street, police said.

The driver's side window of the Malibu was open at the time and the car was running. The news crew said they'd seen the SUV in the area before the key was stolen.

Carlson’s tweet said the thief knew the rental car belonged to the media.

The rental car had to be towed away. The crew then took a Lyft but they say they have video of the incident.

The news crew said a gathering was taking place at the studio well past a court-mandated curfew of 9 p.m.

Police are investigating the incident but another investigation could come after a judge ruled on Friday that R. Kelly could only use the studio from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m.

The news crew was doing an investigative report on the R&B artist, who is under investigation in Georgia, brought to light by the Lifetime docuseries, Surviving R. Kelly. Many of his alleged criminal sex acts and victims were said to be held against their will in Atlanta.

No one is in custody.

The Sun-Times Media Wire contributed to this report.