Philly event featuring Al Sharpton calls for justice for Meek Mill, criminal justice reform

Reverend Al Sharpton and Meek Mill’s mother, Kathy Williams, are among a list of panelists for an upcoming event that will examine the Philly rapper’s ongoing case and call for criminal justice system reform.

REFORM: Bringing Injustice to Light will take place at the University of Pennsylvania’s Irvine Auditorium (3401 Spruce St.) on Tuesday, March 13 at 4 p.m. The event is presented by Justice League NYC and various student organizations from Penn, Temple University, and Drexel University. Those who cannot make it to the event can stream it via Tidal.

Organizers hope the event will “inspire attendees to positively push for nationwide reform” of the criminal justice system.

In addition to Sharpton — who visited Mill in prison last year — and Williams, the event will feature panels from Equal Justice Initiative director and activist Bryan Stevenson, rapper Mysonne Linen, Penn professor Marie Gottschalk, and attorney David Rudovsky. Mill’s attorney Joe Tacopina, along with Williams, will give updates about the rapper and his case.

Organizers also expect members of the Philadelphia Eagles and 76ers co-owner Michael Rubin to appear at the event as spectators.

Mill, 30, is currently serving a two-to-four-year prison sentence at SCI Chester in Delaware County in connection with probation violations stemming from a 2007 arrest on gun and drug charges.

In that arrest, Mill was booked by Philadelphia Narcotics Field Unit officer Reginald V. Graham, who also testified against the rapper in court. As the Inquirer recently reported, Graham’s name was included on a list of about two-dozen potentially tainted police officers kept by the District Attorney’s office as a way to prevent them from testifying in court.

Federal authorities investigated Graham for “several alleged acts of corruption” in Nov. 2013, the Inquirer reported this week. Graham retired before his hearing.

“The release of the so-called ‘Do Not Testify’ list—which includes Mill’s arresting officer, Reginald Graham—supports everything in the motions filed by Mill and others wrongfully arrested by Officer Graham for post-conviction relief,” Tacopina said via a release. “We are hopeful that this is the final step in the process to get Mill and the other defendants released on bail and to have their convictions overturned.”