ASAP Rocky is ‘disappointed’ by guilty verdict, but won’t go back to jail
It was the trial of the summer, drawing the attention of fans, the president and other celebrities.
But now it’s over, and ASAP Rocky has emerged virtually unscathed — except for the month he spent in a Swedish jail awaiting his time in court, and a guilty verdict.
“I am of course disappointed by today’s verdict,” he wrote on Instagram on Wednesday afternoon, not long after a Swedish court found him guilty of assault. “I want to say thanks again to all of my fans, friends, and everyone who showed me love during this difficult time. Imma keep moving forward.”
The rapper, whose real name is Rakim Mayers, was arrested July 3 on an assault charge after a June 30 street fight that was caught on video. The investigation took weeks, and Sweden has no bail system, so he and fellow Americans David Rispers Jr. and Bladimir Corniel stayed behind bars the entire time, including during the trial.
The three-day trial, which took place over the course of four days, concluded Aug. 2 with the release of the trio pending a verdict. They returned to the United States almost immediately.
Rocky didn’t have to be in court Wednesday when judges gave him a conditional sentence — similar to a suspended sentence in the U.S. — and ordered him to pay his victim, Mustafa Jafari, about $1,300 in compensation (12,500 kronor).
The rapper can stay out of jail in Sweden by not committing a similar crime there again. That should be no problem, as Rocky has reportedly said he will never return to the Scandinavian country.
Rapper ASAP Rocky, who spent a month in a Swedish jail under suspicion of assault, shows his gratitude after he’s temporarily freed pending a trial verdict.
His Swedish defense attorney, however, was “disappointed” with Wednesday’s verdict: Slobodan Jovicic said he had been looking for “complete acquittal.” The sentence as it stands isn’t unusual for a Swedish court, but the rapper had faced up to two years behind bars.
Though the court said the ASAP Rocky crew wasn’t able to claim self-defense, and Rocky had testified that he tried to head off an altercation, the verdict seems to have hinged on who hit Jafari in the head with a glass bottle. A witness in the case revised her statement at the trial, saying she hadn’t actually seen who wielded the bottle.
On Sunday, Rocky showed up to headline the Real Street Festival in Anaheim, where the crowd chanted his name and shouted down Sweden. He didn’t address his arrest until about 15 minutes into his set, according to the Orange County Register.
“Y’all know how happy I am to be here right now ...,” Rocky said. “I just wanna say, what I experienced was crazy. ... It was a scary, humbling experience, but I’m here right now. God is good. ... People was praying for me, that uplifted me when my spirits was low. I can’t thank y’all enough, man, that was crazy. Thank you so much. Hip-hop never looked so strong together. We’re a big strong community.”
The Associated Press was used in compiling this report.
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