Jay-Z criticized the two-to-four prison sentence handed to Meek Mill for violating probation as “unjust and heavy-handed” in a Facebook message Monday night.
“The sentence handed down by the Judge – against the recommendation of the Assistant District Attorney and Probation Officer – is unjust and heavy-handed,” Jay-Z stated. “We will always stand by and support Meek Mill, both as he attempts to right this wrongful sentence and then in returning to his musical career.”
Roc Nation, founded by Jay-Z, manages Meek Mill and Hov has also become a strong advocate toward criminal justice reform.
Monday, a Philadelphia judge sentenced Meek Mill to prison after the artist violated his probation due to being arrested twice earlier this year. The rapper, whose real name is Robert Williams, was arrested in March after a fight at the St. Louis airport — the charges were subsequently dropped. In October, Meek entered a guilty plea to reckless driving after a video was posted on social media of him popping wheelies on a dirt bike in New York City.
When questioned if he planned to appeal the sentence, Brian McMonagle, Meek’s attorney, responded emphatically, “You’re goddamned right I am.”
According to Philly.com, Meek’s probation stems from a 2008 drug and weapons charge that resulted in the rapper doing eight months in prison. Initially receiving five years probation, he failed to report to his probation officer and did seek get prior approval before traveling outside of Philadelphia, earning him an additional five months in 2013, also seeing his probation extended to 10 years. In February 2016, Meek Mill was put on house arrest for 90 days after yet another probation violation.