As YNW Melly remains behind bars inside Broward County Jail on double murder charges, Florida prosecutors are seeking the death penalty in his case, according to TMZ and Pitchfork. Court docs allege Melly committed the premeditated crimes for financial gain and believe he is a gang member.
Earlier this month, Melly hired Boosie Badazz’s former lawyer, Jason Roger Williams, to represent him alongside legal teammates Brad Cohen and Nicole Burdett after entering a not guilty plea for first-degree double murder charges. “That was always their plan. They’ve indicated that since the beginning of this case,” Williams tells Billboard of the prosecution’s push for the death penalty. “The prosecution wasn’t hiding the ball on this. They were very clear in articulating this was their plan.”
“This Thursday, we’re set for a discovery hearing in this case, at which time the prosecution should disclose everything to us. We’ve received some paper documents, but there’s over 30 CDs of surveillance and records, which they intend to turn over to us,” Nicole Burdett explains. “We really haven’t had an opportunity to see their entire case at this time, but we intend to get all of that evidence.”
Williams believes if all the evidence is fairly shown, it will prove Melly’s innocence. “A lot of the time, prosecutors and police officers will hold stuff that doesn’t support the theory of their case until the evening of trial. We want this to be a fair process. If it’s a truth finding process, we hope they will turn over everything early on in the case. If they do, we feel that it’s going to be very supportive of innocence in this case,” he declares.
Through it all, the 19-year-old remains upbeat while locked up. “We talked to him not too long ago and he’s in good spirits,” said Jason Roger Williams. “He’s at a very wonderful, critical juncture of his career. I know he wishes he could be out here making music and performing. Brad was with him last week and he’s still in a good headspace to fight to prove his innocence and get back to the world.”
Melly was originally arrested on Feb. 13 in Florida after evidence led Miramar Police to believe that the “Mixed Personalities” rapper and his alleged accomplice, Cortlen “YNW Bortlen” Henry, who was previously apprehended, carried out the shootings of their friends Christopher “Juvy” Thomas Jr. and Anthony “Sak” Williams.
Authorities also made claims that Melly and Bortlen staged the crime scene to look like a drive-by. Police allege that Melly was the gunman behind the deaths as well.