Gunna says he was ‘falsely accused’ in open letter written behind bars
Atlanta-based rapper Gunna was arrested earlier this year and charged with a 56-count racketeering indictment, alongside a number of his “Young Slime Life” associates. The 29-year-old artist has penned an open letter to his fans as he awaits the impending case, intending to clear his name.
“2022 has been one of the best years of my life, despite this difficult situation,” Gunna shared from behind bars. “This year the world pushed P,” he said, referring to his song which ruled the hip-hop scene for much of this year.
“I have worked every day to show God how grateful I am for my gift, for my art, for my life and to be able to provide for my loved ones,” he continued. “Right now, I don’t have my freedom. But I am innocent.
Elsewhere in the letter, the rapper reflected on his marginalized upbringing where he witnessed “black men, black women and black children constantly attacked, hated, murdered, berated, belittled, silenced, judged, used and held captive”.
The letter arrives on his birthday, which he is spending in a Fulton Country jail in Georgia after bail was denied. The judge cited the “potential danger to witnesses and others related to this,” as reported rolling stone.
The initial hearing saw a major backlash on social media after numerous lyrics by the Grammy-nominated rapper mentioning guns, murder and gang affiliation were used as evidence during the deed. ‘charge. Many Twitter users called the move racially motivated and a violation of the First Amendment.
“22&2, just bed and shower, no windows just walls. I can’t see or talk to anyone. I write now and still pray everyday,” Gunna wrote in the caption of her Instagram post. “I was raised to fight fire with water, even though my country’s amendments failed me! PROTECT BLACK ART!”
On June 9, Kevin Liles, CEO of Gunna’s label 300 Entertainment, posted a Change.org petition urging people to “protect black art.” The initiative already has more than 29,000 of its goal of 35,000 signatures. Liles wrote in the description of the petition: “The allegations rely heavily on the artists’ words which prosecutors say are ‘clear evidence of conspiracy’. In the indictment, Fulton County prosecutors say words like “ready for war like I’m Russia” are an admission of criminal intent.”
See Gunna’s full statement below:
Photo by Kevin Mazur/MG22/Getty Images for The Met Museum/Vogue