A Georgia judge denied bond Thursday evening for Atlanta rapper Young Thug, who is charged with conspiracy to violate Georgia’s RICO Act and participating in a criminal street gang.
News outlets reported that Fulton County Judge Ural Glanville ruled, saying he had significant concerns about the entertainer, whose real name is Jeffrey Lamar Williams, posing a threat to the community.
Prosecutors argued that Williams is the head of a violent street gang called Young Slime Life that he co-founded. The gang committed multiple murders, shootings and carjackings over nearly a decade and promoted its activities on songs and social media, prosecutors allege in an 88-page indictment that alleges that, rapper Gunna – whose real name is Sergio. The Kitchen Is – With aspiring rapper Christian Eppinger and 24 other racketeering.
Eppinger, already in prison, was accused of shooting an Atlanta police officer six times in February.
Young Thug, prosecutors said Thursday, “the top dog, is the most dangerous man here, because he doesn’t have to get his hands dirty, he has others to do his business,” Atlanta station WXIA-TV reported.
Williams has been in custody since his house arrest in an upscale neighborhood north of downtown Atlanta last month. His lawyers presented several witnesses to counter the portrayed prosecutors’ image, pointing to the musician’s community involvement. Music executive Kevin Lyles testified that Williams was “like a son” and that he was willing to put his money and business behind a bond.
The rapper, he said, “is not just an artist – he’s an influencer, a man who I think was put here to change the people around him” and “a contributing citizen to this world.”
Young Thug co-wrote the hit “This Is America” with Childish Gambino, which made history when it became the first hip-hop track to win a Grammy Song of the Year in 2019.
An expected trial date, the judge said, would be January 9, 2023.