The rapper YNW Melly is the latest in a string of promising South Florida rappers who bubbling careers have halted by violence and controversy. Last fall, the 19-year-old caught the rap world’s attention with his hypnotic, breakout hit “Murder On My Mind” off his debut mixtape I Am You.
By January, the rapper had already managed to secure a feature from Kanye West and was rearing up to release his follow up project We All Shine. However, things quickly came to a halt when, in mid-February, Melly was arrested with two counts of first-degree murder in connection with the shooting deaths of his two friends YNW Sackchaser and YNW Juvy last October.
The rapper recently pled not guilty to the charges and seems to be preparing himself for the legal battle ahead.
On Friday, it was announced that Melly would be enlisting the services of attorney Jason Roger Williams. Williams is best known for representing Louisianna rapper Boosie Badazz in his 2012 murder trial. Boosie was eventually found not guilty of the charge, but went on to spend five years in prison.
Melly, who will turn 20 next month, was arrested alongside his alleged associate in the murder, Cortlen “YNW Bortlen” Henry. The pair have been accused of staging the double-murder to look like a drive-by shooting, with investigators stating there’s evidence proving Melly shot the two men while in the passenger seat of a car.