Notable Atlanta rappers pay bond for Fulton murder suspect, others

Atlanta rap stars recently spent about $300,000 bonding six people out of the over-crowded Fulton County Jail.

It has been widely reported that Young Thug and Gunna bonded out 20 to 30 people facing minor charges from the jail April 23.

But that isn’t exactly so.

Public records indicate they bought temporary freedom for six inmates, one of whom is facing a murder charge. All six people are facing at least one felony.

Young Thug, born Jeffery Williams to the city’s Jonesboro South housing projects, said he and Gunna “just woke up and ... just got as many people as we can out.” Gunna’s real name is Sergio Kitchens.

Newly elected Fulton Sheriff Patrick Labat said this was planned. He said his agency gave the rappers a list of 40 inmates in response to their request of those who could be easily released.

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Crews filmed the inmates being released, and the footage is expected to be part of a music video, according to media reports.

Labat said he was asked to appear on camera.

“That’s not my job,” he said.

Thug’s 23-track project, “Slime Language 2,” released April 16 is set to debut at No. 1 on the Billboard 200 album chart. The collection is being released through his label Young Stoner Life (YSL) Records.

This is Thug’s second No. 1 record, his first being the 2019 debut studio album “So Much Fun.” Thug is one of the era’s most influential artists. His trap style can be widely seen on many of today’s most important musical artists.

The inmates walked out of a jail that has been over-crowded since the day it opened in 1989. In February, when multiple Atlanta City Council members were stunned by the conditions they saw during a tour, the jail was 400 prisoners over the 2,500-prisoner capacity. Many inmates slept in common areas.

That’s why Labat has told county leaders he wants a new jail, with an estimated price tag of between $400 million and $500 million. A new facility would give them more elbow room and ability to institute more humane, progressive treatment.

But there’s another problem facing the county: The courts being closed due to COVID-19 has created a case backlog that county officials estimate will cost taxpayers at least $60 million and 36 months to clear.

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As for the six people released, their charges span misdemeanor counts of giving a false name or having drug paraphernalia to felony counts of burglary and theft. Their stays in jail range from 24 days to 1,225 days.

That stay of more than three years belongs to a man who faces murder charges for the December 2017 shooting of Dominic King at the Budgetel Inn & Suites on Fulton Industrial Boulevard. The accused man’s defense claimed it was self-defense, according to 2019 court records.

The rappers spent $239,000 ― nearly 80% of what they shelled out — to spring the alleged murderer, according to the sheriff’s office.

A judge revoked the man’s bond Monday and he was re-arrested. Online records show that, as of Tuesday, he remained in jail.

Thug, 29, is no stranger to the legal system. He has fought gun and drug arrests for several years.

Thug was also sued for his alleged role in a 2015 highway shooting. His former tour manager shot into the tour bus of rapper Lil Wayne, or Dwayne Carter, along a Cobb County section of I-285. No one was injured. The former tour manager told police that he did the shooting for a higher gang status.