This is the message we'll send to Judge Genece Brinkley and President Judge of the Common Pleas Court, Sheila A. Woods-Skipper, her supervising judge:
Probation is a trap. And it's why we need justice for Meek Mill.
The judge who sent Meek Mill to prison is and has been out of control.
Against the recommendation of the assistant district attorney AND the probation officer, Judge Genece Brinkley sentenced Meek to two to four years in prison for insignificant probation violations on a case from nearly a DECADE ago. Meek was arrested twice but hadn't even been convicted of any new crime--and BOTH cases were eventually dropped or dismissed.
Nothing about Meek is a risk to public safety - in fact, he’s contributed to society through his community service and activism. So why did Judge Brinkley throw Meek into a cage yet again - for 2-4 years? Even worse, Meek's lawyers make strong allegations against Brinkley and her enormous personal bias against Meek--going as far to request that he leave Roc Nation and sign with a friend of hers and asking Meek to remake a Boyz II Men song with a shout out to her.
Meek has been on probation since he was 19 years old. He's now 30 and has been under the strain of the state his entire adult life--and his situation is not uncommon. 1 out of every 3 people in Pennsylvania prisons are there because of a probation or parole violation - not new crimes. The state has the second highest rate of people on probation or parole in the country and Philly has the highest incarceration rate of the 10 largest US cities, with half of the people sitting in jail because of probation or parole violations.
The system is literally following Black people around for years just waiting for the day to justify putting us back in cages.
Judge Genece Brinkley is notorious in Philadelphia for doing just that--following people on probation and parole and calling their status into review without any credible evidence that they even violated. On top of that, she has one of the highest rates of sending people to prison for probation violations. She's more than just a bad apple--she's part of a system that is terrorizing and entrapping Black people every day.
Judge Brinkley needs to step aside.
The public outcry against Brinkley's decision has been enormous. We have a real chance to get justice not only for Meek, but for the other Black and brown people who are under the same oppressive structures but with nowhere near the resources to get free.
Will you sign the petition?
Here is the Petition:
I join thousands of others concerned with your gross misconduct on Meek Mill's case and the cases of so many other Black people in Philadelphia whose lives have been ruined by you. Your sentence of 2-4 years in prison is cruel and harsh punishment that stretches the legal limits of your discretion. Your power as a judge could be used to help transform someone's life--but instead, you have chosen over and over again to send people to prison without just cause.
The allegations against you in Meek Mill's case show a personal bias that makes you unfit to serve as judge. We're asking that you immediately recuse yourself and allow another judge to determine justice in this case. We ask that if you refuse to step aside, that your supervising Judge take immediate action.
CC: President Judge of the Philadelphia Common Pleas Court, Sheila A. Woods-Skipper