The legal team for imprisoned Philadelphia hip-hop star Meek Mill has filed another in a series of motions asking Philadelphia Common Pleas Court Judge Genece E. Brinkley to reconsider the 2- to 4-year prison term she imposed Nov. 6 for violating his probation and to reduce the sentence to time already served and end his decade-old probation for a 2008 gun and drug conviction.
The motion filed Thursday in Common Pleas Court basically supplements motions filed Tuesday asking Brinkley to disqualify herself from Mill’s case because of an alleged personal bias against the rapper and to let another judge reconsider her sentence for fairness and appropriateness.
Brinkley has not responded to any of the motions. She said that she was “done with” Mill at the Nov. 6 sentencing and that when he completes his minimum two years in prison and becomes eligible for parole, his case would be handled by the state Board of Probation and Parole.
The latest motion, to modify Mill’s sentence, would give Brinkley — if she doesn’t recuse herself from the case — the option to end the national controversy that erupted after she sentenced him to prison by reducing the rapper’s sentence to the time already served in prison and ending his probation. Hundreds of people gathered Monday evening outside the city’s Criminal Justice Center protesting Mill’s imprisonment, and hundreds of thousands have signed internet petitions calling for his release.
Mill, 30, born Robert Williams, has been held in protective custody — in a single cell 23 hours a day, with one hour for exercise — in the state prison at Camp Hill, near Harrisburg, pending his permanent prison assignment.
His lawyers have vowed to appeal the prison term to Superior Court, calling it excessive for technical violations of Mill’s probation: testing positive for the prescription narcotic Percocet and two misdemeanor arrests this year. Mill’s lawyers also maintain that Brinkley has exceeded her authority as a judge, in effect acting as a prosecutor in the case, and making suggestions about how to pursue his performing career.