Rocky, born Rakim Mayers, along with three of his associates, were arrested earlier this month for defending themselves against two aggressive Afghan migrants who followed and harassed them along a busy city block, and it was all caught on videos that were shared on the rapper’s Instagram account (see below).
The two Muslim males who pursued Rocky are now under investigation for molestation.
The hip-hop star is reportedly being held in solitary confinement without any visitation or call privileges, and facing up to six years in prison if convicted. TMZ reported that he’s jailed inside an alleged “disease-ridden” facility. Rocky could be held in prison until he is due to stand trial in mid-August.
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In a new interview with TMZ, Quavo recalled his own run-in with the authorities in Sweden. “I will tell you one secret: Sweden had us down on the curb nearly as soon as we landed,” he told the outlet.
“They had me and my cameraman, and they were trying to lock us up too. Sweden is real tough. Free my boy Rocky!”
Rocky’s arrest has been condemned by many in the hip-hop community, with rappers including Tyga and Tyler the Creator refusing to play shows in the Scandinavian country.
A petition calling for Rocky’s release on Change.org has accumulated over 600,000 signatures and has been shared by Justin Bieber, Nicki Minaj, T.I., andPost Malone.
In a recent statement on Instagram, A$AP Rocky’s manager, John Ehmann, noted: “For a man that has not been proven guilty to go through these conditions, while visiting a country to headline their festival, is troublesome.”
He added: “To keep Rocky and his colleagues in jail is punishment before due process.”
Meanwhile, one New York congressman has promised to fight for Rocky’s freedom.
Speaking to Complex, Congressman Adriano Espaillat, a representative for New York’s 13th Congressional District explained why he sent letters to the US State Department, US Embassy in Sweden, and the Swedish Ambassador in Washington D.C. seeking help in seeking justice.
“He’s part of a growing, young movement of artists that, first of all, I commend because they identify with the neighborhood where they live, which in this case is Harlem,” Espaillat said. “Harlem is a neighborhood that is very special because Harlem is not just about the Apollo or 125th Street. It’s really about an attitude and a personality and a history and a legacy.
“And so, for him to be a young person and continue to identify with Harlem, and be a strong presence of the artist community in Harlem, is great. That’s why I’m going to bat for him.”
Espaillat has seen the tape of the incident that led to the rapper’s arrest and said he was “provoked, and harassed, and followed, and accosted, and I think he acted in self-defense.”