Florida state prosecutors have filed notice they intend to seek the death penalty in the double murder case against rapper YNW Melly.
Melly, whose real name is Jamell Demons, and Cortlen Henry, are accused of fatally shooting two of his close friends in October and getting assistance from another man attempting to make it look like the victims had been killed in a drive-by shooting, the Sun-Sentinel reported.
YNW Melly, 19, is charged with two counts of first-degree murder in the Oct. 26, 2018, shooting deaths of Anthony Williams, 21, and Christopher Thomas Jr., 19.
The south Florida rapper is best known for his single “Murder on My Mind” and for a collaboration with Kanye West, “Mixed Personalities.”
By Florida law, first-degree murder is punishable either by death or life without parole for suspects at least 18 years old at the time of the offense, USA Today reported.
In a court filing, USA Today reported, prosecutors stated their intent to prove a number of aggravating factors, arguing the killings were:
- "especially heinous, atrocious or cruel"
- "committed in a cold, calculated and premeditated manner without any pretense of moral or legal justification"
- "committed by a criminal gang member"
In the court documents, TMZ reported, the prosecutors said they believes they can prove beyond a reasonable doubt that Melly killed his friends for financial gain, the murder was especially heinous, atrocious or cruel, and he committed homicide in a cold, calculated and premeditated manner.
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