Meek Mill Meets With An Inmate Put In Prison For ‘Being Poor’
Meek Mill is still invested in the fight for criminal justice reform.
Almost 2 years after his own release from prison, the rapper traveled to a State Correctional Institution in Phoenix to meet with Maurice Hudson. Meek met with the inmate–who was incarcerated after failing to make court-ordered payments–while accompanied by 76ers partner Michael Rubin.
Both men spoke to reporters about their visit and the importance of changing the criminal justice system in Pennsylvania.
“It’s a case very similar to Meek’s. [Hudson has] been sent to prison two different times: Once for one to two years, another time for 18 to 36 months—never committed a crime,” Michael Rubin told reporters. “For me to see people in Pennsylvania going to prison for not committing crimes is something I can’t understand. … I think [Hudson] is a good person. He’s got three kids, wants to take care of his kids. And instead of being with family and taking care of his kids, he’s in prison for being poor.”
Mill and Rubin learned about Hudson’s case from a recent report in the Philadelphia Inquirer. Even though Hudson had already served his time for a decade-old robbery charge, he was left with $1,941 in outstanding court costs. When he told Judge Genece Brinkley (the same judge who sentenced Meek to prison for parole violations) that he was struggling to pay off the debt since he only earned about $150 a week as a part-time janitor, the judge ended up giving him an additional prison sentence.
As for Meek, he told the Phildelphia Tribune that he wasn’t at all surprised that Judge Brinkley was the one behind Hudson’s sentencing.
“We were like two brothers meeting with the same mother,” Meek told the outlet. “He said this was like he was going to court for a murder. I understand because when you are in this position you don’t know how long you are going to be away from your family. It was the same thing for me.”
Now, they’re calling for Maurice Hudson’s release along with revisions to the state’s probation laws. Rubin told reporters, “Pennsylvania is spending $100 million a year putting people in prison for technical violations. That means they did not commit a crime…we need to change that.” He went on to say Pennsylvania has “the third highest rate of people in prison for technical violations.”
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You must listen to this story of Maurice Hudson – If this doesn’t upset you I don’t know what will! Maurice was sent to prison for 18-36 months because he couldn’t afford to pay $1,900 in fines while he has two kids at home with special needs. Thanks to Samantha Melamed of @phillyinquirer for telling this story – WE ARE ON THIS!!! And this is exactly why we created @reform – we are going to go state by state to change the laws so situations like this can’t happen – What happened to Maurice is NOT ACCEPTABLE!! We look forward to Maurice getting home to be with his kids and family.