The A$AP Rocky saga has been a roller coaster of emotions and it looks like there is no end in sight. After the controversial rapper was detained in a Swedish prison late last month following an altercation he had with two Swedish men, he still remains behind bars.
Rocky maintains he was acting in self-defense during the June 30 altercation. Rocky had reportedly been on a European tour when the fight broke out with local media blaming the rapper. The very next day TMZ published the video of the fight, which purportedly showed Rocky and his entourage fighting against one other person. It also showed several men accused Rocky and his crew of breaking a pair of headphones. The men followed them after making the accusation and a brawl ensued.
It did not take long for the news of Rocky’s arrest to spread, so did claims that the New York rapper was living in deplorable and inhumane conditions that lead to the start of a petition calling for his release. Celebrities and fans alike showed their support for Rocky and artists like Tyga cancelled future concerts in Sweden.
Politicians and civil rights leaders like Rev. Al Sharpton have also come to bat for the rapper calling for the State Department to intervene, but some did not believe Rocky deserved help after the controversial comments he made about activism.
During a 2016 interview with “The Breakfast Club” radio show, Rocky appeared to distance himself from social justice issues and the Black Lives Matter movement as a whole.
“So every time something happens because I’m Black I gotta stand up? What the fuck am I, Al Sharpton now? I’m A$AP Rocky. I did not sign up to be no political activist,” Rocky said at the time. “I don’t wanna talk about no fucking Ferguson and shit because I don’t live over there! I live in fucking Soho and Beverly Hills. I can’t relate. I’m in the studio; I’m in these fashion studios; I’m in these bitches’ drawers. I’m not doing anything outside of that. That’s my life.”
Nonetheless, many have called the Swedish government racist for their treatment of Rocky, whose real name is Rakim Mayers, and their seeming unwillingness to release the rapper along with their dismissal of the Swedish men that appeared to be the instigators.
Check out the timeline below.
1. July 1, 2019
TMZ releases video of the altercation between Rocky’s group and the two Swedish men.
2. July 2, 2019
As media attention begins to circle around the late June altercation, Rocky took to social media and posted two extended videos of what happened in Sweden. In the videos, it appeared the Swedish men were following Rocky and his group as they tried to walk away. I also showed that the men broke their headphone hitting someone in Rocky’s group. Rocky commented “I’M INNOCENT” and “HITS SECURITY IN FACE THEN FOLLOW US” under the videos. The video also showed women accusing the Swedish men of sexual assault. Rocky was arrested not long after posting the videos and taken to a Swedish jail.
3. July 3
Rocky misses scheduled performance in Norway as news spreads of his arrest.
4. July 5
Rocky was ordered to be held for two more weeks so Swedish authorities can continue their investigation. His lawyer, Henrick Olsson Lija tells the media that Rocky was being held in a detention center.
5. July 9, 2019
A Change.org petition began to circulate claiming Rocky was being held in deplorable conditions in Sweden.
6. July 10, 2019
A 2016 A$AP Rocky interview with the “Breakfast Club” comes back to haunt the rapper. During the interview he denounced social justice work.
So every time something happens because I’m Black I gotta stand up? What the fuck am I, Al Sharpton now? I’m A$AP Rocky. I did not sign up to be no political activist,” Rocky said at the time. “I don’t wanna talk about no fucking Ferguson and shit because I don’t live over there! I live in fucking Soho and Beverly Hills. I can’t relate. I’m in the studio; I’m in these fashion studios; I’m in these bitches’ drawers. I’m not doing anything outside of that. That’s my life.”
7. July 12, 2019
Rev. Al Sharpton and the National Action Network (NAN) released a statement after Rocky’s family reached out to them. Sharpton said he met with Rocky’s family and viewed the video and believed Rocky was innocent. He called on politicians to put pressure on the State Department to intervene and to allow him to visit Rocky as a minister.
8. July 14, 2019
The U.S. State Department tells Politico that they are monitoring the situation to make sure Rocky is treated fairly.
“There are certainly some facts about the arrest and detention that raise concerns,” a State Department spokesperson said. “We expect all governments, including Sweden, to treat American citizens fairly and with respect.”
9. July 17, 2019
New York Congressman Adriano Espaillat joined other politicians in a press conference to urge the State Department and the Swedish government to work together to secure Rocky’s release. Espaillat also mentions that a member of the State Department will arrive in Sweden on Friday, July 19, to attend Rocky’s next hearing.
10. July 19, 2019
White California rapper, G-Eazy takes to Twitter to call out Sweden for racism after revealing he had been locked up on more serious charges including, assault, possession of drugs and use of narcotics, but was released within 48 hours.
11. July 19, 2019
Donald Trump tweets that he talked to his friend, Kanye West, and is now paying attention to what has been happening with Rocky in Sweden. Also, a judge ruled that A$AP should be held for another week pending the investigation.
12. July 20, 2019
Donald Trump tweets claims that he spoke with the Swedish prime minister about A$AP Rocky and was assured that Rocky was being treated fairly. In a second tweet he said he would be having a second phone call with the prime minister.
13. July 22, 2019
One of the Swedish men involved in the altercation gets his charges dropped and escapes prosecution.
14. July 24, 2019Source:WENN
Sweden charged Rocky with assault and there is no word on when he will be released.
15. July 25, 2019
Trump claims Sweden has “let down” African Americans, ignoring his own racist history.
16. July 30, 2019Source:Getty
A$AP Rocky goes to trial. The alleged victim is seeking around $14,500 in damages and if the rapper is convicted, he could face two years in jail. He pled not guilty.
(Photo by David Wolff – Patrick/Redferns)
17. August 2, 2019Source:Getty
According to the AP, A$AP Rocky and the two other suspects are freed from detention until Aug. 14, which is when the verdict will be announced. It is not clear if they will be allowed to leave the country.
(Photo by David Wolff – Patrick/Redferns)