Meek Mill and Pennsylvania parole reform

Listen 49:04
Rapper Meek Mill, (center), arrives at the Criminal Justice Center in Philadelphia on Tuesday, Aug. 27, 2019.  (Jessica Griffin/The Philadelphia Inquirer via AP)

Rapper Meek Mill, (center), arrives at the Criminal Justice Center in Philadelphia on Tuesday, Aug. 27, 2019. (Jessica Griffin/The Philadelphia Inquirer via AP)

Philadelphia rapper Meek Mill has been battling with the city’s criminal justice system for 12 years after he was arrested on gun and drug charges when he was 19. What came next was a protracted battle with a judge over violations of his terms of probation. But on Tuesday, he pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor firearms charge while all other charges were dropped – meaning Meek’s case is finally settled. Many see Meek Mill’s treatment by the criminal justice system as an example of systemic problems with parole and probation requirements.  They are using Meek’s legal saga as a reason for reform. Today we’ll talk about parole and probation locally and nationally, and how Meek Mill’s case relates to these issues. Our guests are NPR reporter BOBBY ALLYN, Penn State professor MARK BERGSTROM, who is executive director of the Pennsylvania Commission on Sentencing, and with KEITH REEVES, professor of political science at Swarthmore College.

Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

It will take 126,000 members this year for great news and programs to thrive. Help us get to 100% of the goal.