It’s been 1,632 days since October 2018, when cops say that YNW Melly shot and killed two of his friends. After years of delays, the South Florida artist is finally going to be tried for killing two people who were already dead.
At the start of 2019, YNW Melly was one of the most talked-about rap acts, with a viral hit called “Murder on My Mind,” a cosign from Kanye West, and a rapidly growing fan base. That all fell apart when, on February 13, 2019, he was arrested and charged with shooting and killing his friends and fellow group members, YNW Juvy (Chris Thomas, 20) and YNW Sakchaser (Anthony Williams, 21). After looking into the killings for five months, the person was caught.
Williams and Thomas were dropped off at the Memorial Hospital in Miramar, Florida, at about 4:35 a.m. on the night of the killings, October 26, 2018. This was done by YNW Bortlen (Cortlen Henry). Both men were already dead because they had been shot several times. Bortlen said that the two guys had been shot by unknown people in a drive-by shooting.
Melly Was the Shooter
Melly and Bortlen were both caught after the police finally figured out that Melly was the shooter. Bortlen was caught in Houston and sent back to Florida to face murder and helping a murderer charges.
The Miramar Police Department said in a statement at the time of the charges, “Jamell Demons, also known as YNW Melly, and Cortlen Henry have been arrested and charged with two counts of first-degree murder.” “On October 26, 2018, Anthony Williams and Christopher Thomas Jr. were killed. Based on forensic evidence, the investigation found that Demons shot and killed Williams and Thomas Jr. and that Demons and Henry set up the crime scene to look like a drive-by killing.”
Melly was turned down for bail. He said that he was innocent and that he had been wrongly charged.
Melly wrote on Instagram, “To all my fans and supporters, no, I did not get locked up in Washington, but I am turning myself in today. I want you all to know that I love and appreciate each and every one of you. I lost my two brothers to violence a few months ago, and now the system wants to find justice.” “Unfortunately, a lot of rumors and lies are being spread, but don’t worry, God is with me and my brother @ynw.bortlen, and we want you to remember that it’s a ynw family. I love you @ynwsakchaser1 and @ynwjuvy. #freeus.”
In February 2019, new information about the case came out that showed Thomas and Williams were shot from inside the car, not from the outside as Bortlen had said. Authorities say that a single.40 caliber shell casing was found inside the car on the floorboard of the left rear passenger side, which is where Melly, who was 19 at the time of the shooting, was reportedly sitting.
The investigation suggests that later, Bortlen and Melly shot at the car from the outside to try to make it look like a drive-by shooting and then drove around for hours with the bodies before going to the hospital.
Melly said she wasn’t guilty in March of 2019. He says he wasn’t there when the shooting happened and that he had no reason to shoot his friends. The prosecution, on the other hand, says that the killing may have happened because of a fight over money and because YNW Sakchaser reportedly threatened Melly’s mother, Jamie King.
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Prosecutors Said They Would Seek the Death Sentence
In April 2019, prosecutors said they would seek the death sentence. The families of the people who were killed agreed with this decision. In November of that year, prosecutors shared photos from the crime scene, which were said to back up their claim that the victims were shot from inside the car.
The case has been moving at a snail’s pace for the past three years as both sides plan for a long trial and argue over the evidence. Fredo Bang has refused to answer questions about the case, even though he is said to have talked to Melly the night of the killings.
In July 2022, the death sentence was taken off the table, but it was brought up again in November of that year. Melly has also been accused of planning to get out of jail and having pipe bombs, which his lawyer, Raven Liberty, rejects.
Below is the confirmation post:
The start of a trial is when the jury is chosen, which happened Monday (April 10) in the Melly case. It will likely take weeks to choose a fair jury for the case of the popular rapper. The case is being heard by Judge John J. Murphy III.
Melly’s mom was happy about the start of the trial on Instagram on Monday night.
“The latest news on YNW Melly,” We started picking the jury today, and we’ll keep doing it for the next two weeks,” she wrote. “The trial begins on June 5, 2023. No more waits. #freemelly2023.”
“Melly’s coming home,” she wrote as the post’s caption. “When I went to court today, I thought there would be more delays, but we started picking jurors. I can’t explain why I feel anxious everywhere, but God has us covered.”
The Broward State Attorney’s Office has announced that YNW Melly’s trial will start in June and continue through July.
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