Kodak Black Receives Commutation of Prison Sentence From President Trump
UPDATE (Jan. 20):
The White House has released a statement on the commutation of Kodak Black's prison sentence by President Trump. Kodak was among the 73 individuals that were granted pardons and another 70 individuals that had commuted sentences.
"Bill K. Kapri - President Trump granted a commutation to Bill Kapri, more commonly known as Kodak Black. Kodak Black is a prominent artist and community leader. This commutation is supported by numerous religious leaders, including Pastor Darrell Scott and Rabbi Schneur Kaplan. Additional supporters include Bernie Kerik, Hunter Pollack, Gucci Mane, Lil Pump, Lil Yachty, Lamar Jackson of the Baltimore Ravens, Jack Brewer formerly of the National Football League, and numerous other notable community leaders. Kodak Black was sentenced to 46 months in prison for making a false statement on a Federal document. He has served nearly half of his sentence. Before his conviction and after reaching success as a recording artist, Kodak Black became deeply involved in numerous philanthropic efforts. In fact, he has committed to supporting a variety of charitable efforts, such as providing educational resources to students and families of fallen law enforcement officers and the underprivileged. In addition to these efforts, he has paid for the notebooks of school children, provided funding and supplies to daycare centers, provided food for the hungry, and annually provides for underprivileged children during Christmas. Most recently while still incarcerated, Kodak Black donated $50,000 to David Portnoy’s Barstool Fund, which provides funds to small businesses affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. Kodak Black’s only request was that his donation go toward restaurants in his hometown."
UPDATE (Jan. 20):
Bradford Cohen, who is the attorney for both Kodak Black and Lil Wayne, confirmed the pardons with XXL. "President Trump and his administration have been tireless advocates on behalf of the African-American community," Cohen said in a statement. "These pardons is [sic] a perfect example of this administration following up on its reforms and commitments. Thank you to President Trump for his advocacy and dedication to justice reform."
Kodak is serving a nearly four-year prison sentence on a federal firearms charge stemming from his May 2019 arrest prior to the Rolling Loud Miami Festival. Kodak's release date had been slated for Nov. 11, 2022, with the possibility that he could be released to a halfway house as early as this year. Now, via pardon, he is eligible to be released immediately and will be fully exonerated in this particular case.
Kodak, who has reportedly had a rough go in prison including allegations of abuse by staff, has not been shy about requesting help from No. 45. Last April, he requested an in-prison meeting with Trump. "Tell Donald Trump to pull-up on me, I got a brilliant idea," Kodak wrote on Instagram. "I thought of something back in Miami but I dismissed it ['cause] I be thinking I b crazy sometimes. This shit keep following me tho! This ain't got nothing to do with my wrongful conviction, come see me I got my corona mask on."
In September, he directly asked for Trump's help in getting released via his lawyer. In a final attempt, in November, Kodak offered to donate $1 million to charity if Trump would use his presidential power to pardon him before he left office. Last week, reports surfaced Kodak might be on Trump's list of people to be pardoned. Publicly, Trump never responded to the South Florida rapper's pleas, but it looks like his requests were heard.
Aside from the federal weapons offenses that he was pardoned for, Kodak Black faces another legal battle stemming from 2016. The rapper, born Dieuson Octave but changed his name to Bill K. Kapri in 2018, is accused of raping a woman on Feb. 7, 2016. The accusations against him include pinning down and biting the alleged victim, described as "an adult-age high school student," in addition to rape while in a hotel in Florence, S.C.
"According to investigators, on or about February 7, 2016, Octave is alleged to have engaged in the sexual battery of the victim at a hotel located at 2120 West Lucas Street, Florence, SC," South Carolina's Florence County Sheriff's spokesman Major Michael Nunn said in a statement in August of 2016.
A trial was scheduled for spring 2019, but has since been continued. No new date has been set.
XXL has reached out to Kodak Black's lawyer for comment.
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