Gun Threats Shut Down Surviving R. Kelly Premiere in NYC, Organizers Accuse Singer of 'Intimidation'
Gun threats shut down "Surviving R. Kelly" premiere in NYC, organizers have accused the singer of "intimidation"
The premiere of Lifetime’s upcoming docuseries Surviving R. Kelly was abruptly cut short in New York City Tuesday night due to gun threats.
The film was only about 10 minutes in, when theatre management asked the attendees to evacuate the event, which was held at NeuHouse Madison Square.
Once everyone was safely out of the building, event organizers were heard telling the crowd, “We exited the building out of an abundance of caution, but this is all the more reason why we need to make sure this message is heard.”
A spokesperson for the New York City Police Department tells PEOPLE they received a call from NeuHouse management, explaining that someone had made threats to fire shots during the premiere.
When NYPD arrived, they explained the film had already been stopped and attendees were in the process of exiting the building.
The spokesperson also said there were no injuries or arrests made. However, they will be taking a report down of the incident.
Shortly after the scare, Lifetime issued a statement, claiming the alleged threats were an “intimidation tactic.”
“There were several called in gun threats to NeueHouse. With the safety of guests in mind, we decided to evacuate the theater,” Lifetime explained.
“This was an intimidation tactic from R. Kelly to further silence these women.”
A representative for R. Kelly did not immediately respond to PEOPLE’s request for comment.
Throughout Kelly’s career, a number of women including his ex-wife Andrea Kelly, who attended the premiere, have accused him of domestic abuse and sexual assault.
Kelly has firmly denied the allegations, including those made by his ex-wife.
“We deny the many dark descriptions put forth by instigators and liars who have their own agenda for seeking profit and fame,” a representative for Kelly previously told PEOPLE.
“All of the women targeted by the current media onslaught are legal adults of sound mind and body, with their own free will. Law enforcement officials in Atlanta and Chicago previously have made ‘wellness’ visits to check on the women in question and have found everything to be safe and sound.”
Surviving R. Kelly investigates years of alleged abuse and features interviews from Kelly’s “inner circle.”
Also in attendance were alleged sexual assault survivors Jehonda Pace, Lisa Van Allen, Lizette Martinez, Asante McGee, Faith Rogers and Kitti Jones.
The 3-part docuseries is set to air in January.
If you or someone you know think they are being abused, call the National Domestic Violence Hotline at 1-800-799-7233 (SAFE) or 1-800-787-3224 (TTY) now for anonymous, confidential help, available 24/7.