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All For Love: The 25 Most Romantic New Edition Songs Of All Time

Whether you were bitten hard by the love bug or just got a jones in your bones for some quick lovin,' this list of New Edition cuts will prep you right.

If there's one thing that every true music lover can agree upon—regardless of the tons and tons of beliefs and ideas we can’t—it’s that 80s and 90s R&B will almost certainly get you caught up in your feelings. Deep feelings at that. The kind you might not have ever known you had until you open Spotify and turn on New Edition’s “Can You Stand The Rain” or “I’m Still In Love With You.” Or what about when you have to set the mood prior to a night of Netflix and Chill and you turn on Johnny Gill’s “My, My My” or Bobby Brown’s “Rock Wit’chu”? See what we're getting at here?

In arguably one of the most lit weeks of in black music this year, we were blessed with the long awaited and critically acclaimed New Edition biopic The New Edition Story, which aired on Jan. 24, 25 and 26 with three phenomenal episodes. Not only that, but the legendary spin-off group Bell Biv Devoe has returned with their brand new album, Three Stripes. With the release of the three-part film, fans from Gen X to Millennials alike have been reminded (and some discovering) not only how important the infamous R&B group was to music, but also how pivotal they are to one’s love life. Over time, they've provided the soundtrack to all of its complex, heartwarming, heart-wrenching emotions.

For over 30 years, New Edition has been dropping hit after hit, even when they were divided, and has grown to become one of the greatest and most influential R&B groups of all time next to The Jackson 5. When one takes a moment to reflect and analyze the group, you have to put this into perspective. They have produced one of the most successful, prolific and infamous R&B stars of all time in Bobby Brown, the groundbreaking R&B and hip-hop producer/CEO that is Michael Bivins, one of the most selfless and underrated solo vocalists in Ralph Tresvant, an unsung lead vocalist in Ricky Bell, a top-five-dead-or-alive R&B legend and the most consistent member in Johnny Gill, and perhaps one of the most important members who held the group together in Ronnie Devoe.

Together, N.E. has inspired an entire generation of the greatest and most popular bands and singers who came after them including Boyz II Men, New Kids On the Block, N’Sync, Backstreet Boys, Usher and countless others. Although each of them stand out in their own ways, it could be argued than the majority of R&B singers and groups after a certain time period carries the majority of their significant traits, including their dynamic performance styles, precision, having more than one capable lead singer, and most importantly, their unique ability to create some of the most passionate, emotional, sexiest, deepest and most meaningful love songs.

And to prove it, we've prepared a definitive list of 30 of the most romantic and heartfelt New Edition songs of all time. You know, the ones that will almost certainly make you feel some kind of way. Hold that special someone close as we go through the records that define what love is all about, featuring classics and slept on cuts from N.E., Bell Biv Devoe and solo catalogs of Bobby Brown, Ralph Tresvant, Johnny Gill and Ricky Bell. So grab some wine, turn off your Netflix and prepare to fall deep in those feelings.

New Edition: "Can You Stand The Rain" (1988)
As arguably one of the most powerful love ballads in R&B history, “Can You Stand The Rain” is one of their most important songs in their history. Not only did it help their 1988 classic, Heartbreak, become double-platinum, but it aided them in their evolution into a much more mature sounding group in the midst of the departure and ascension of on again/off again member Bobby Brown. The newcomer Johnny Gill sets the tone with his dominating and smooth baritone singing while having perfect chemistry with lead singer Ralph Tresvant and Ricky Bell’s vocals. The reinvigorated New Edition sings so powerfully that whoever can’t feel this classic in their soul doesn’t seem to have one.

Ralph Tresvant: "Sensitivity" (1990)
On his self-titled debut album, Ralph proves he’s not the only one who can carry a solo project by himself. He kicks it off with the New Jack Swing hit, “Sensitivity,” a song where he convinces women everywhere that they need a man who not only loves and honors them, but is also kind and understanding. A sensitive type, exactly like Ralph in every way that he masterfully translates into not only the lead single, but the entire album.

Bobby Brown: "Rock Wit’cha" (1988)
From his breakout sophomore album, Don’t Be Cruel, Bobby Brown gives us one of his finest love making anthems with “Rock Wit’cha,” where he gets quite sensual and steamy for one of his most passionate performances in his catalog. It's one that was likely responsible for children born in ’88 and ’89. Don’t sleep on the sensational visuals behind “Rock Wit’cha” either, as it fully captures The King of R&B’s magnetic charisma and sex appeal as he awaits a young “tenderoni” (we’ll get to that one later) for a night of passion. The song and the video set the mood for moments more special than Netflix and Chill.

Ricky Bell: "Come Back" (2000)
For the uninitiated or the casual New Edition fan, this one is a song you might be sleeping on as many may have not been aware that Ricky Bell, one of the more underrated members of the crew, made his Ricardo Compana album in 2000. Bell smoothly reminisces over an ex and attempts to get her back. While “Come Back” may not have been as iconic as other songs from his N.E. brethren, it’s certainly a standout that will strike a nerve.

New Edition: "Is This the End" (1983)
If there’s one skill that Ralph Tresvant has perfected over the years, it’s his ability to convey deep emotions in his music whether he is singing about love or heartbreak. On “Is It The End,” he really channels that heart-wrenching feeling of dealing with a breakup with his harrowing vocals on the chorus, even at such a young age that’s almost cathartic. It would be something he would eventually carry over to New Edition and his own music as the group progressed. Grab your tissues.

Bell Biv Devoe: "I Do Need You" (1990)
As much as Bell Biv Devoe further embraced hip-hop during the New Jack Swing era, the trio never abandoned their core R&B roots. The Poison album gave fans many sensual and sexy moments, and one of their most passionate of these is the underrated love ballad, “I Do Need You.” With Ricky Bell’s powerful vocals topped off with some well executed jazz melodies, the track is almost mandatory if you’re making that ultimate 90s R&B playlist.

New Edition: "Whispers In Bed" (1985)
“Whispers In Bed” is a classic New Edition record epitomizing that old school teenage love cheesiness that us millennials can’t get enough of. As a matter of fact, what love struck millennial doesn’t enjoy doing what Ralph Tresvant sings about with lines like, “Girl, every night when I'm home/And I'm sittin' around on my bed/And I pick up the phone and I dial your number/I always have these images of you/Running around inside my head.” If you’ve never been in love before, you couldn’t possibly relate.

New Edition: "I’m Still In Love With You" (1997)
After several years of solo success in the 90s, the band came back together for a needed homecoming as they give us another one of their classic love ballads, “I’m Still In Love With You.” Despite the late 90s being one of their most tumultuous times in their career, their group chemistry was still very present with all six members together for the very first time. The track is brimming with sincere emotion, from the lyrics right on up to the group’s performance. Here, they plead for forgiveness and attempt to convince that special person that they’re still the same person, and hope that no one will come between them despite taking her for granted. This in turn creates one of their finest performances of all time.

Bobby Brown: "Roni" (1989)
This passionate ode to the good girls rocked the world and dominated radio in the late 80s and early 90s. L.A. Reid and Babyface, the men who defined 80s and 90s R&B, brought out the best of Bobby’s charm and charisma that gushes all over “Roni.” Add his spirited performance to the mix and you have a recipe to one of his greatest records of all time. Fellas, if you have a good girl in your life, hold her close as you listen to this song.

Bell Biv Devoe: "When Will I See You Smile Again" (1990)
Bell Biv Devoe takes it back to their New Edition roots with A standout from the Poison album, “When Will I See You Smile Again,” that stands in sharp contrast to its lively tone. If anything, it is one of their best “please forgive me” songs out of their catalog due to its crisp melodies and Ricky Bell pouring his heart out in his lead vocals. One listen will instantly remind listeners why they should never take their significant other for granted.

New Edition: "You’re Not My Kind Of Girl" (1988)
The “new and improved” New Edition of 1988 gives us one of their more unique love records, “You’re Not My Kind Of Girl,” written by the legendary Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis. The cleverly written song describes what it’s like to meet that one woman who’s practically flawless in every way, but fail to develop any chemistry. Play this jam if you ever want to let a significant other go, but kindly.

Johnny Gill: "There U Go" (1992)
It should go without saying that Johnny Gill as a solo artist is one of the undisputed kings of the slow jam and a true pillar of what 90s R&B was all about. He proves this easily with the sensual “There U Go” from the Boomerang soundtrack as it sets the mood for a night of romance and passion.

Bobby Brown: "Every Little Step" (1988)
While New Edition was forging a new path with Johnny Gill, Bobby Brown (with the help of Jimmy Jam and Terry Lewis) was becoming a trailblazer in his own right with Don’t Be Cruel. The upbeat melody,“Every Little Step” was not only a sincere ode to love and loyalty, but a track that helped propel him into stardom. While the pace and tempo don’t come off as traditionally romantic as his other classics, the romance lies in its lyrics as he pledges nothing but love and undying loyalty (to Whitney perhaps?) in its ever so catchy hook. With songs like “Every Little Step,” its no wonder why Don’t Be Cruel went on to sell over seven million copies.

Bell Biv Devoe: "Something In Your Eyes" (1993)
“Something In Your Eyes” has to go down as one of Bell Biv Devoe’s most underrated slow jams in their catalog, possibly due to the commercial failure of their second album, Hootie Mack. The Babyface-penned track seemingly contains more of the legendary producer/songwriter/singer’s essence than BBD’s, but it doesn’t compromise the quality and effectiveness of “Something In Your Eyes.” It’s sexy, of course, so what else could one expect?

New Edition: "Count Me Out" (1985)
In the midst of New Edition’s transitional period, when they were not only changing as a group but also maturing into older teenagers, the group was responsible for some of the cheesiest (and sometimes cringe-worthy) tracks in R&B. Between 1985 and 1988, they were still trying to maintain a squeaky clean bubblegum pop image. “Count Me Out,” as cheesy as it is, is a solid tune about simply staying faithful to the person you love. Although a lot of the lyrics were a bit corny, it’s the cute kind of corny that spells out how much you really love your significant other. Insert heart emojis.

Johnny Gill: "I’m Still Waiting" (1991)
If you take a look at Johnny Gill’s singles discography, he’s maintained a consistent string of top-notch soundtrack appearances in the early 90s. “I’m Still Waiting” from the New Jack City soundtrack was one of his finest hours along with the well thought out visuals to match. When it comes to slow jams, he does everything right, from the singing to how effectively it sets the mood. Its brief appearance when Nino was in bed with the woman of G-Money is prime evidence.

Ralph Tresvant: "Love Hurts (1990)"
It can be debated that Ralph Tresvant’s effortless ability to translate his vulnerability into classic records was one of the key elements that made New Edition such a legendary boy band. Just like how he can spike a song with an upbeat vibe like “Sensitivity,” he can turn it into a solid heartbreak anthem like “Love Hurts." With its deep lyrics and captivating performance, it’s a surefire track to listen to if you’re getting over that painful breakup… or if you have no bae and you’re looking like the Jordan crying face meme on the wrong day.

New Edition: "How Do You Like Your Love Served" (1997)
Another gem from their Home Again album, New Edition comes with some vocal heat and clever songwriting on “How Do You Like Your Love Served.” Johnny Gill’s soulful baritone steals the spotlight, and its dominance gives the song a passionate punch. But never ones to be out-shined, Ralph and Ricky come around to inject the sensual and soft vibes to make this one of their most seductive love songs.

Johnny Gill: "My, My, My (1990)"
Johnny Gill’s most famous hit record, “My, My, My,” is a slow jam that everyone and their mother (and fathers for that matter) should have on their 90s playlists. It certainly helped define the softer side of the New Jack Swing era of the early 90s. Gill crafted one of the most iconic slow jams with his trademark sensuality and deep range. And don’t forget about its simple and catchy hook either, not that could if you wanted to.

Ralph Tresvant: "Your Touch (1994)"
While the sophomore jinx hit New Edition, including Ralph Tresvant, pretty hard, it didn’t quite stop him from making quality music. The vibe of “Your Touch” has a similar late night softness that matches (but certainly does not rip off) Keith Sweat’s “There You Go Telling Me No Again” but it’s so much deeper than that. The melody combined with Ralph’s soft vocals gives us an alluring and hypnotic tune that makes this one of his most seductive efforts. It's an underrated gem than all newbie New Edition fans should get up on immediately.

New Edition: "Dream Girl (2004)"
As New Edition’s first attempt to transition into the new millennium, the group came back to the forefront with their Bad Boy helmed album, One Love. While it’s debatable as to whether or not the album was up to par with their 80s and 90s work, one jam that always stood out (depending on whether or not you have the Japanese version) is the Ryan Leslie and P. Diddy-produced banger, “Dream Girl.” “Dream Girl” represents the best of everything you love about about New Edition, sans Bobby Brown, and repackages it with a 21st century swagger.

New Edition: "Lost In Love" (1984)
If there's any New Edition song from their extensive discography that demonstrates that feeling of having a deep infatuation with someone, it's their 1985 love ballad, "Lost In Love." With its dreamy aura and signature 1980s synth groove, the song encapsulates the essence of what its like to be carefree, young and have that #WCW or #MCM you've been longing for. Ralph Tresvant signs, seals and delivers on his lead vocals, further pushing that vibe of being young, dumb, carelessly in love.

Johnny Gill: "Let’s Get The Mood Right" (1996)
In case anyone you know needs convincing about why Johnny Gill is arguably the king of bedroom music—even among Bobby, Ralph and BBD—play his classic lover’s anthem, “Let’s Get The Mood Right.” By the way he approaches it, even in the video, he does just that. But be warned: This isn’t side piece music. Gill made this magnificent tune strictly for the couples, as the maximum enjoyment of it would be much more appreciated in that context. Especially for those “empire-building” couples who work so hard and haven’t had an intimate moment in quite a while. Turn this classic on and this will most definitely set the mood to save your relationship.

Bobby Brown: "My Place" (1997)
Despite the mixed criticism that Bobby Brown’s Forever garnered, there were some hidden romantic cuts that should still be appreciated by New Edition and R&B fans alike. Bobby’s “My Place” is a sensual and seductive tune showcasing his passionate vocals, despite being a bit rusty at the time.

New Edition: "Mr. Telephone Man" (1984)
What’s a New Edition list without the all-time R&B classic, “Mr. Telephone Man"? C’mon now, this is passionate, adorable bubblegum romance at its finest. “Mr. Telephone Man” epitomizes everything that many N.E. fans loved about the boy band in the early 80s and that’s their ability to sing with rich and crisp harmonies with original songwriting and cheesy, but fun production. All of which combined is what makes not just “Mr. Telephone Man,” but their self-titled second album the classic that it is.

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A Look At The Nuance Of U.S. Immigration Through The Lens Of 21 Savage’s Case

For nine days, 21 Savage carried out his day-to-day inside a detention center, a timeframe that felt like two months according to his manager, Kei Henderson. The “A Lot” rapper was detained by the Immigration Customs and Enforcement (ICE) in Atlanta, Georgia (Feb. 3) on claims that he’s a British citizen who overstayed his visa since migrating to the U.S. city in 2005 at age seven. The detainment occurred when the 26-year-old was pulled over by the Atlanta Police Department (APD), with ICE in tow. APD claims it had an arrest warrant for rapper Young Nudy, a cousin of 21 Savage who was also part of the artist’s entourage at the time of the incident.

On Feb. 12, 21 was released on bond until his immigration court case occurs. Since Savage’s incident reached the national spotlight, petitions and a larger conversation on the nation’s immigration policy have reached a fevered pitch. The situation was accelerated once Jay-Z contracted attorney Alex Spiro to represent Savage, born She’yaa Bin Abraham-Joseph.

While the detainment presumably shocked the masses, the most glaring issue is the fact that Abraham-Joseph was not initially granted bond — that discretion is left up to ICE or a judge. Spiro notes that ICE can also attribute past criminal offenses “into their enforcement policies and strategies,” when it concerns detainment, but given ICE’s controversial statement on Abraham-Joseph (noting his past and expunged felony drug charge), Spiro believes this situation is a “miscarriage of justice, a misuse of resources.”

“And I’ll say two further things,” Spiro continues. “One is even if you take the position that he should have to answer to ICE for any of these issues, why not bond him out, allow him access to his paperwork, to his family, to his lawyers and allow him to fight his day in court like a civilized human being? The second thing is, to talk about the resource question, even thinking about this as an economics question, rather than let this man be at liberty where he provides for so many people, so many people depend on him for their own employment, so many of his dollars go to helping taxes, so many of his dollars go to philanthropy and helping people and rather than allowing him to help society and bring joy through his music and bring happiness, instead of that, what do we do? We take those same government resources and we do an operational target to incarcerate him, to cage him.”

Spiro says he can’t draw up conclusions or “speak to” ICE’s “motivations,” noting that there could be varied reasons behind the agency’s motion. "It may be just as simple as they’re just treating him like everybody else but we’re not used to it as a society becoming so public," Spiro says. "Once it becomes public it’s just troubling and seems disproportionate and illogical, and it may very well be that he was targeted either to set an example or for some other convoluted reason. I don’t know yet because my focus has almost entirely been on the avenues to release, but we’ll get to the bottom of what happened here one way or another."

Now, with Abraham-Joseph awaiting the fate of his status in the U.S. while out on bond and in the midst of an expedited hearing, Spiro states the pieces of this puzzle have to be treated with precision. “When you’re dealing with people’s liberty, you can’t just look at it like an equation. You have to try at least at some level to put yourself in the other person’s shoes and think to yourself if they had the power and I had grown up in their country, how would I want to be treated and what would be the decent and right way to treat me?” he says. “If we could do that and have a little empathy I think it would go a long way to solving what anybody in the world outside of America must think is a very troubling problem and a lot of people in America are starting to think is a troubling problem.”

Here, we look at a few terms and past immigration instances that outline the severity of the country’s treatment of migrants and the legislation that can alter the lives of those awaiting legal residence.


1. How The IIRAIRA Radicalized Immigration:

The combination of the Illegal Immigration Reform and Immigrant Responsibility Act of 1996 (IIRAIRA) allowed the government to separate undocumented immigrants into two sets. According to The Huffington Post, the division is distinctly based off how a migrant entered the U.S. If one came to America with a visa but overstayed its duration, then they will not have to return to their home country in order to file for official residence since they entered legally. If someone entered illegally, they would have to return to their native country in order to file for legal residence.

If an applicant raises a red flag under any “grounds of inadmissibility,” like unlawfully living in the country between 180 to 365 days, applicants can face a three-year penalty, while overstaying more than a year can pin 10 years before someone is allowed re-entry.

“Removal deportation and the laws that govern it are very complicated. Suffice it to say that we are trying to avoid that,” Spiro says concerning Abraham-Joseph’s case. “The other thing that can happen is the visa and paperwork that’s been pending can actually get accelerated and get determined fast enough so that they catch up or bypass the need for removal.”

2. Qualifications For U Nonimmigrant Status (U Visa):

It’s been stated that Abraham-Joseph has filed for U Nonimmigrant Status or a U Visa in 2017. Persons that qualify for this form of legal residency have to be a victim of a specific crime (sexual assault, trafficking, extortion, manslaughter, domestic violence, witness tampering) or encountered mental or physical trauma as a result of the crime’s aftermath. Victims can also assist law enforcement in apprehending suspects and helping to solve the case.

In 2013, Abraham-Joseph was shot six times and lost his close friend, Johnny, during the incident. The pair were the victims of an attempted robbery. Spiro notes 21 Savage’s application has remained pending for quite some time. “The backlog is years and years, this site indicates that over five years these visas can be pending before processing,” he says. Spiro believes an increase in employees to handle these types of applications can help accelerate processing times. “Maybe we should put more people to process visas and be humanitarian in the way that they deal with people and less people out handcuffing un-dangerous people who don’t need to be handcuffed.”

If Abraham-Joseph’s U Visa application gets approved by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), he will become a “lawfully permanent resident” or a Green Card holder, and have access to rights like opening a bank account and attending an “academic or vocational” school. The government caps the amount of U Visas it approves at 10,000 per year. A victim of criminal activity is solely eligible for this form of immigrant status, not their families. The length of the U Visa’s processing time can take anywhere from a year to a year and a half.

3. Detainment Conditions And Mental Health:

Georgia’s Irwin County Detention Center is the reported facility where Abraham-Joseph was held. According to Rolling Stone, it’s deemed one of ICE’s worst immigration centers with multiple reports of sexual assault, abuse of solitary confinement by guards, and expired food being served to detainees. In a summary published by Project South, Irwin is also known for administering high bond rates.

Spiro says Abraham-Joseph’s living conditions were “inhumane” and his communication with those on the outside was strictly limited — to have contact with his legal team was a privilege. “He has no ability meaningfully to exercise and have proper nutrition and he’s severely limited in his ability to even get legal help and to protect himself. He can’t respond when somebody says something in public or the media. He’s given no voice,” Spiro reveals. “He’s utterly voiceless and it’s a dehumanizing experience and he’s lucky that he’s so beloved that people are going to be out there protecting him for him but it is a scary thing to not be able to protect yourself. He has young children. He can’t be with them to protect them and it’s a travesty.”

In mid-2018, Donald Trump’s “zero tolerance” immigration policy displayed how dire conditions are within detainment centers, especially concerning children who are separated from their guardians, and the mental health assistance that certain people will need once released. It’s also reported that immigrants dealing with mental health issues have been unjustly placed in solitary confinement. “There is a pattern of people with psycho-social disabilities being inappropriately placed in isolation, not receiving adequate mental health care, and dying by suicide,” said Clara Long, a senior researcher for Human Rights Watch. Recently, a 40-year-old Russian man named Mergensana Amar, who was seeking asylum, committed suicide after a year of detainment at an immigration center. The Washington Post also notes that nine people died in 2018 while under ICE’s detainment.

4. The Cost Of Detainment:

In a report by CNBC that analyzed ICE’s 2018 budget, $133.99 per day is the cost it takes to preserve an adult bed. For families that include mothers and children, $319 per day is the cost to maintain that space. The article also outlines ICE’s estimate that immigrants are kept in detention centers for 44 days on average.

“Every single day that he is in there, we are paying for him to be detained,” Spiro says on Abraham-Joseph. “We are paying money to actually put this man in a cage when he can just as easily fight this case from the outside and we can go to court and handle it that way.”

Earlier this month, Rashida Tlaib (D-Mich.), Ilhan Omar (D-Minn.), Ayanna Pressley (D-Mass.), and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) gathered 200,000 signatures to demand that fellow Democrats decline future increases in ICE's budget, The Hill reports. Ocasio-Cortez, who has called for ICE's abolishment, took aim at the agency for its treatment of not only Abraham-Joseph but also political game-changers and children.

5. Immigration Across The Globe:

Across the globe, the paths of migration from underserved countries to those with greater economic opportunities continue to shed a spotlight on various nations’ immigration policies. There was the onset of Brexit in 2016, Italy’s crackdown on an influx of those seeking asylum, and Trump’s belief that a border wall between the states and Mexico will drastically cut crime, plus his Muslim Ban proposal.

The Trump administration recently attempted to end the Temporary Protected Status (TPS) program, which benefited those migrating from El Salvador, South Sudan, Haiti, Yemen, Sudan, Somalia, Honduras, Syria, Nepal, and Nicaragua. It was meant to protect migrants who left countries ravaged by natural disasters or armed turmoil and are unable to return. Over 320,000 people fall under TPS.

Another sector of immigration that fell under intense scrutiny within Trump’s administration was the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA). In 2017, he attempted to nix any hope of "dreamers" renewing their application, thus putting them at risk for deportation. DACA, which benefits 700,000 young adults, was established in 2012 to temporarily protect children who migrated to the U.S. before they turned 16 from removal. It also presented another form of the term "lawfully present" and would allow DACA recipients a chance to get a higher education and work permits as they went through the proper channels for legal residence.

“I think that young people that are not born here, and so are not given citizenship but come here in their early years, face the question of their place and their status from the moment they start becoming adults,” Spiro says. “As a teenager at some point no doubt where you realize you’re not an American citizen and if something goes wrong, if you don’t have a way to get citizenship, if you don’t have a way to get status, if you don’t have a way to get a visa, that you live a life in limbo and a life that’s insecure in some ways. That’s a troubling thing for people to have to grow up with.”

While Abraham-Joseph was released on bond, his fate is still in the process of being determined by an immigration judge. “There are rules and laws that govern this but at the end of the day ever since he was moving forward with his life as an adult,” Spiro says, “he’s been dealing with this immigration issue and dealing with it in good faith.”

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Six Things To Know About The Mysterious Death Of Tamla Horsford

Georgia officials have officially closed the case of Tamla Horsford, citing no foul play in her mysterious death.

But the case of a mother of five who died at an adult sleepover has raised a vast amount of questions due to the nature and behavior of those present. The mysterious death of Tamla Horsford caught the eye of the public this month, but the 40-year-old was found dead at a friend’s home in Cumming, Georgia in November 2018.

On Wednesday (Feb. 20), Major Joe Perkins with the Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office told reporters in a press conference that none of the 40-year-old's injuries were aligned with foul play. “It was a party. They were drinking,” 11 Alive reports. “She was drinking. Most of the partygoers had gone to bed at that time, and she was on the deck alone.”

It was initially reported that Horsford accidentally fell off a balcony on Nov. 4, where she was attending a “Football Moms” sleepover with seven other mothers and three men. Local news site WSB-TV shared an early coroner’s death certificate that listed Horsford’s death as an accident but the fall from the deck caused “multiple blunt force injuries” and “acute ethanol intoxication,” known commonly as alcohol poisoning which might have led to the fall.

But friends and the internet sleuths believe there are other layers to the story as it never reached public attention until it was reported that court employee Jose Barrera was fired for illegally accessing documents related to the case. Barrera is also the boyfriend of the woman who owns the home.

Horsford’s best friend Michelle Graves who wasn’t at the party also believed foul play took part in her friend’s death. “It’s impossible to get the injuries that she had from one fall,” Graves said. After speaking to the WSB-TV about the case, she claimed her personal information was released by Barrera and sent to five of the women who were at the party. Only during an investigation into Graves claims it was revealed that Barrera accessed court documents related to Horsford’s case as well as a stalking incident involving his girlfriend.

On Wednesday (Feb. 20), more details were released about the case in the form of a 911 call made by Barrera the day Horsford’s body was found. While Barrera's 911 call was made at 8:59 am, Horsford’s body was discovered at 7:30 am by the homeowner’s aunt. Hashtags with Horsford’s name and videos shared by popular activists like Chakabars who have helped bring the story to public knowledge.

With so many layers to uncover, here’s what you need to know about the mysterious case of Tamla Horsford.


1. Tamala Horsford Was Found Dead At “Football Moms” Sleepover, But Men Were Present

In a video sent to WSB-TV from the adult sleepover, Horsford is all smiles while singing “Happy Birthday” with friends. What’s also seen in the video are three men, including Jose Barrera who made the 911 call. Many have wondered why men were present if the witnesses claimed it was a sleepover meant for women.

2. Her Wrist Was Cut, But Attendees Believe She Fell Off A Balcony

In the 911 call released Wednesday (Feb, 20), Barrera is heard pointing out a cut on Horsford’s wrist. "She's lying in the yard, basically on the patio downstairs. She's not moving one bit. She's not breathing," he told dispatchers. "I'm noticing a small cut on her right wrist. She's not breathing whatsoever. I don't know if this cut was self-inflicted."

As mentioned above, an original coroner’s report claimed there was blunt force trauma to Horsford’s body from the fall, but close friend Michelle Graves says the family hired another medical examiner who reportedly found multiple abrasions on Horsford’s body. "We're glad we're not the only ones who feel there's something awry with the story and with how she lost her life," Graves told Mike Petchenik of WSB-TV.

3. Boyfriend Of Homeowner Where Horsford Died Was Fired For Accessing Court Files On The Case

In December 2018, Barrera, who worked as a pretrial services officer within the Forsyth County Court system was placed on administrative leave for using his position to “access confidential files on a current investigation surrounding a death in which you were a witness.”

Forsyth County News reported he was later terminated in a letter where Court Administrator Robin S. Rooks wrote he lost confidence in Barrera’s ability to do his job. It wasn’t until February 1 that an incident report was written mentioning Barrera’s actions. In addition to the findings, Graves claimed Barrera stated in the same report that the Georgia native exposed her “work and cell phone numbers, home address, work address and driver’s license, along with information about her height, weight and extended family.” Graves stated the information was given to the other women who were at the adult sleepover.

He denied the accusations but alluded that anyone’s information can be found publically. “For her to believe that her information was leaked by me is grossly incorrect and I will believe that until the day I die,” Barrera told FCN. “Anybody can be found.”

Barrera previously worked as a probation officer in Hall County from March to November 2017 and earlier as an officer of the Department of Community Supervision in Cumming County. He was fired for the latter position but alleged it was an unlawful firing due to an “interoffice disagreement over a relationship with a coworker.”

4. Public Curiosity Believes There Are Racial Undertones To The Case

Friends and relationships exist outside of color lines all the time, just see an episode of Grey’s Anatomy or studies on the population increase of non-white people in America. But Horsford’s case has raised eyebrows because she was the only woman of color at the party. Forsyth County’s history with black people isn’t the most favorable as it was a popular gathering of white supremacists as recent as 1987.

In a segment on the early days of The Oprah Winfrey Show, the former talk show host took a trip to Cumming, where she talked with residents about their disdain for “race mixing” the LGBTQ+ community as well as the difference between “blacks” and “ni****s.”

Weird history aside, the case didn’t get national attention until two months later. History has proven deaths of black women are often overlooked and while this case was heading that way, Black Twitter and black Georgia natives tried to rewrite it.

A GoFundMe was also made for Horsford’s family but hasn’t raised much since it’s creation on November 27, 2018.

5. Homeowner And Other Attendees Of Party Have Received Death Threats On Social Media

Marcy Hardin, Jeanne Marie and Nichole Renee Lawson are reportedly some of the women who were at the sleepover at the time of Horsford’s death. As the story gained traction, the group has been the target of death threats accusations that they played a role in their friend’s death.

Law firm Banks, Stubbs, and McFarland LLP, who is representing the homeowner, issued a statement maintaining their innocence.

“At this time, each of the partygoers and their families have received death threats on various social media postings," it reads. "The threats need to stop. This tragic accident is exactly that, an accident. It is unfortunate, sad, and unbelievably heartbreaking to her family and friends. However, certain very vocal friends and family members of Mrs. Horsford have been describing this accident as a “murder.” Nothing can be farther from the truth."

6. The Case Has Been Officially Ruled An Accidental Death

On Thursday (Feb. 20),  Horsford's case was officially closed, 11Alive reported.

“The State of Georgia has ruled the death accidental and consistent with an accidental fall,” said Major Joe Perkins with the Forsyth County Sheriff’s Office. “None of the injury patterns noted were consistent with foul play.” After speaking to the attendees' police said Horsford's death happened when she accidentally fell from a deck at the house.

None of the attendees saw the fall because they were reportedly sleeping when it happened. “While the injuries sustained appeared to have been likely received in a fall, detectives awaited toxicology and medical examiner reports to verify the findings,” Perkins said.

Horsford’s body was taken to the GBI medical examiner for an additional autopsy report. Her family has told reporters that they aren't ready to speak the public about the case and are hoping to have family photos of Tamla Horsford removed from social media.

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Solitary Alignment: 5 Self-Affirming Reads For Single Ladies On Valentine’s Day

Ahh, the Feast of Saint Valentine—the Hallmark holiday that strikes us with its arrow each year, for better or for worse, depending on your bae status. While the romantic holiday is adored and celebrated by many, if you’re still reeling over, say, your ex’s refusal to commit, chances are Feb. 14 is more of a heartache for you than anything.

But as a wise woman once said, “If they liked it then they should’ve put a ring on it.” So whether V-Day has you scared of lonely or sulking over a lost love, as another wise woman once said, they “would be SUPER lucky to even set eyes on you this Valentine’s Day. That’s it. That’s the gift.” Shout out to The Slumflower.

Sure, having a bae on Valentine’s Day is cool, but so is reminding yourself why you’re just fine without one (cue Webbie’s “Independent”). In fact, single folks have better relationships overall, according to the Journal of Social and Personal Relationships. You know how the old adage goes: love yourself before loving someone else.

For this Valentine’s Day, VIBE Vixen rounds up a nourishing list of books for our sisters doin’ it for themselves. Consider this your reminder of how badass you are—because you are! Oh, oh, oh. *Beyoncé voice*

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