By Hayden Wright
On November 6, A judge sentenced Meek Mill to two to four years in prison for a probation violation, leading hip-hop artists and activists to protest in the streets of Philadelphia. The probation stems from a 2008 arrest for drugs and guns for which Meek served time.
Meek is now appealing the sentence and requesting “the recusal of Judge Brinkley from considering and ruling on that motion and from any further adjudicatory role in this case.” According to Meek’s complaint, the judge ignored the advice of his probation officer and the rapper has “responded well” and “actively participated in an effort towards behavioral change.”
“Judge Brinkley has repeatedly offered inappropriate personal and professional advice to the defendant,” Mill’s attorney Brian Mcmonagle told Billboard.
Rick Ross, NFL protest leader Colin Kaepernick and others joined the public outcry about what was seen as an unduly long sentence. Critics slammed the credibility of the claim Mill violated his probation because charges on his record in the last year were dropped or dismissed. “Free Meek Mill” has become a rallying point for a larger cultural conversation about criminal justice and the black community.