Rapper's Attorney Requests Judge's Recusal as #FreeMeekMill Bus Tour Hits Philadelphia Police Headquarters - NBC 10 Philadelphia

Rapper's Attorney Requests Judge's Recusal as #FreeMeekMill Bus Tour Hits Philadelphia Police Headquarters

A lawyer for the Philadelphia-born rapper has asked that the judge in a long-running probation stemming from a 2008 conviction remove herself.

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    Hundreds of protesters, including 76ers legend Dr. J, Eagles player Malcolm Jenkins, and rapper Rick Ross, rallied in Center City in support of jailed Philly hip hop artist Meek Mill. NBC10's Aaron Baskerville has the story.

    (Published Tuesday, Nov. 14, 2017)

    Lawyers for imprisoned rapper Meek Mill have asked the judge in his long-running probation case to remove herself for, in part, expressing herself "in personal, injudicious terms when ruling or explaining her rulings."

    The request for Judge Genece Brinkley's recusal included some tawdry accusations against the judge, like a claim that she asked the Philadelphia-born rapper to record a version of a Boyz II Men song and include a shout out to Brinkley. Another claim accuses the judge of recommending Mill leave his management agency, Roc Nation, which is headed by Jay-Z, and rejoin his original manager, a Philadelphia man named Charlie Mack.

    Mill, a Philadelphia-born rapper whose real name is Robert Williams, was sentenced Nov. 6 by Brinklery to 2-to-4 years in prison for repeatedly violating his probation. She handed down the prison term despite a recommended punishment from the Philadelphia District Attorney's office that did not include jail time.

    Meek Mill Sentenced 2 to 4 Years in PrisonMeek Mill Sentenced 2 to 4 Years in Prison

    Philly hip hop artist Meek Mill was sentenced two to four years in prison for violating his parole.

    (Published Thursday, Nov. 9, 2017)

    Brinkley, who has overseen Mill's probation violation hearings for years since his initial conviction on drug and gun charges in 2008, said Mill "does what he wants" despite repeated warnings.

    "Last week's hearing was a farce. It was a miscarriage of justice that lacked even a semblance of fairness," Mill's Philadelphia attorney, Brian McMonagle, told NBC10 in an email. "Today, we asked this Judge to step aside and allow another Judge to bring justice to this case and to this citizen. This wrong has to be righted."

    Earlier Tuesday, three charter buses with large #FreeMeekMill slogans on their sides temporarily stopped by the Race Street headquarters of the Philadelphia police department Tuesday afternoon in Center City.

    Their presence caused a commotion for a few minutes on the busy street near Franklin Square. The buses then headed toward Old City.

    NBC10 Skyforce captured video of the buses as they drove through the eastern neighborhoods of Center City.

    Two of three charter buses promoting the release of Philadelphia rapper Meek Mill from prison during their trip through Center City, Nov. 14, 2017.
    Photo credit: NBC10 Skyforce

    They appeared a day after a large protest outside the Criminal Justice Center near City Hall on Monday evening. That event involved some celebrities, including basketball hall-of-famer Julius "Dr. J" Erving and rapper Rick Ross.

    Brinkley's sentence immediately spurred fans and friends of the rapper to question the criminal justice system in Philadelphia. Supporters also began accusing the judge of bias toward the rapper.