Meek Mill’s jail sentence triggers outrage
Last week after Meek Mill entered the Pennsylvania State Correctional Institute at Graterford in Montgomery County, a public outrage has occurred for the rapper’s jail sentence.
The 30-year-old was arrested Wednesday and could face two to four years behind bars for a violation of his parole from a 2008 gun and drug case.
Two arrests have the rapper locked up; a fight in a St. Louis airport in March, and then in August for reckless endangerment in New York for popping wheelies on his dirt bike and not wearing helmet.
Meek appeared in court Monday, where he was sentenced by Philadelphia Judge Genece E. Brinkley for up to four years in prison for the two arrests. The judge also referenced a failed drug test, as well as the Philly native’s noncompliance with a court order restricting his travel.
Brinkley has overseen the rapper’s case for years. Meek’s attorney Joe Tacopina expressed Meek’s feelings on the sentence with CNN saying “Frustrated, really frustrated and knows he’s being treated different than anyone else, if his name was John Smith, he wouldn’t be in jail and he certainly wouldn’t be on probation.” He also added “He’s been on probation for nearly 10 years. Nobody goes on probation for 10 years.” Tacopina plans to appeal the sentence and accuse Brinkley of taking a “personal interest in the case.”
Meek’s sentenced happened one day prior to Philadelphia elected Larry Krasner as the city’s new district attorney. Krasner is a progressive Democrat, and vowed for a criminal justice reform movement.
Meek’s trouble with the law started at the age of 18 when he was caught illegally carrying a firearm while on his way to a corner store. In 2008, the rapper was convicted on gun and drug charges. He spent eight months in prison, and was then sentenced to a five year probation period.
He would violate his probation in 2014 when he performed outside Pennsylvania. Meek returned to prison for five months, and was released with a reinstated probation by Brinkley.
Meek also was placed on house arrest for 90 days by Brinkley for a 2016 February probation violation.
Before he was sentenced on Monday, a report from Philly.com says the rapper spoke “I’m human. I’m not perfect, I’m asking for mercy. You gave me the ladder to do what I have to do to prevail in my struggle. I made it this far, I can’t really go back and start over.”
The judge responded with ““I gave you break after break, and you basically just thumbed your nose at this court.”
Meek’s attorney describes Brinkley as being “a little stalkerish” and said she showed up at the rapper’s “community service for the homeless” and “watched him do community service” last year.
Tacopina in an interview with Billboard early last week put Brinkley as “infatuated” with Meek, and has even requested he leave his current record label Roc Nation to sign with a friend of hers.
Since Meek was locked away, his label owner and big time market name Jay-Z used his label to promote a petition addressed to Philadelphia Gov. Tom Wolf asking the state to reevaluate the sentence.
Jay-Z also backed his labelmate up in his 4:44 show in Dallas on Tuesday by saying, “I gotta say something about a young man named Meek Mill. He caught a charge, he was about 19, he’s 30 now, he’s been on probation 11 years. ******* 11 years. Now he got to do two to four years because he got arrested being on a bike popping a ******* wheelie.”
Tacopina plans to appeal the sentence as soon as possible. Until then, Meek’s music career will remain on hold. He’s recently coming off his third studio album Wins and Losses that dropped in July.