Radar has learned that StaTeena originally crossed paths with the now-convicted criminal while appearing in Snoop Dogg's video for the single That's That S—, claiming she never noticed anything that raised her suspicions during the time they would spend together.
"I was in the music video ... I was in the music video with Snoop per say, but I did see R. Kelly on set," she shared during an interview with Dennis Byron from HipHopEnquirer.
They exchanged niceties, but it wasn't until later that she had a "full meeting" with Kelly when she was in Chicago modeling.
She used to sell cigars, and some of her high-end clientele included Michael Jordan and Kelly.
StaTeena recalled walking by the Ignition crooner with a box full of smokes one evening, and he offered to buy the whole thing and asked her to sit down.
"He's like, 'No more working for you for the night. Just enjoy yourself,'" she recalled.
StaTeena said she later saw him a third time, although she felt Kelly didn't recognize her from their past meetings because her looks changed "so much."
She claimed they had a "deeper interaction" while attending an after-party.
"He took a liking to me," she said about their club night, claiming he gifted her and some friends with expensive alcohol bottles. She was 19 at the time, but reiterated that Kelly was unaware of her age.
During the interview, StaTeena went into detail about another hangout with Kelly at the performer's studio called the "Chocolate Factory," which operated from about 2004 to 2010, stating that she was respected and treated kindly.
"[Kelly] asked me to slow dance with him," she shared.
While being asked about the explosive allegations against him, Stateena said she saw portions of the Lifetime documentary Surviving R. Kelly.
"I absolutely don't condone any of that type of behavior, but I never experienced that and I didn't see that. Now I did see ... a lot of desperados is what I would call them," she said. She was referring to "groupies," admitting women were constantly flocking to him.
"He seemed like he had a really good heart," Stateena shared, noting that it's "mind-blowing" to hear the allegations against Kelly.