Since last November Meek Mill has been sitting in a prison cell while he serves time on some very suspicious "parole violations." When the Philadelphia rapper joined some youngsters in New York City on a dirtbike ride never did he think his care-free actions would land him back behind bars.
While his fans and supporters from the hip-hop community continue to chant and write #FreeMeek on social media, the MMG rapper's legal team is doing all they can to free the man --- and bring the corrupt members of Philly's shady court system to the light. RollingStone recently visited the rapper in prison to discuss some key details about his long history with Philadelphia police and its criminal justice system. They also took a very close examination at Meek's case and spoke to members of his family about his first arrest at the age of 18 that put a damper on his life and career every since.
VIBE has reported on many of the details exposed in the article, but we combed through to pluck the 5 most revealing takeaways from RS's #FreeMeekMill story.
After Meek Mill's father was murdered when he was just 5 years old, his mother says it took nearly 10 years for Meek to speak again.
"For 10 years, I barely got a word out that boy. He'd stay in his room drawing cartoons," says Kathy Williams, his mother. "Then he turned 15 and those hormones hit him hard. He was out there on the corner, spitting fire."
Meek only allows lawyers and a few close friends to visit him in prison.
"I won't let them come," he says of his family, musical collaboraters and friends. "If they see me like this – fucked-up beard, hair all ganked – then it's like I'm really in here. Which I'm not."
Meek's manager claims Judge Brinkley, who handles his case, has ties to Charlie Mack --- the well known Philadelphia media mogul who once managed the rapper but parted ways on bad terms over money disputes.
"Last thing [Charlie] said was, 'Too many chiefs, not enough Indians,' " says Phil Smith, Meek's manager about partying ways with Charlie Mack. "I'm like, 'Yeah, whatever, motherfucker.' "
After his release, Meek has plans to help spread awareness about the way America's prison systems have been designed to systemically trap Black and Brown citizens.
"There's brothers locked down that did nothing to be here but piss off people like Brinkley," Meek says about the inmates in prison with him. "I want to speak on this system and what it does to black people – on both fucking sides of the fence. "Straight self-hate, man, it makes these people crazy."
Meek's cousins who were apprehended with Meek during his first arrest at age 18 says officers severally beat him up, stole money from them and lied about allegedly witnessing Meek sell crack cocaine.
"They started beating us, kicking us, yelling, 'Eyes to the ground, motherfuckers!' " says Meek's cousin William Bailey. "Then a few of 'em went upstairs to search our rooms." They came back holding a bag of money. "It was my money," says Ikeem, who was the house's weed supplier. "He took $30,000 from my closet. Graham yelled 'Jackpot!' as he came down the stairs."