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Tekashi 6ix9ine Making Waves On Social Media Since Prison Release, But Those Around Him Concerned He's Still A Target
“A young gang member who wants to make a name for himself could try something,” one of Tekashi 6ix9ine’s lawyers said.
Tekashi 6ix9ine may be on his way to freedom, but his legal team reportedly doesn’t think he’s out of the woods just yet.
The 23-year-old rapper has been serving out the remainder of his sentence at home after a judge ruled last month that he was at risk of developing complications were he to contract coronavirus and it would be safer for him to be placed on house arrest.
He had admitted to numerous racketeering, weapons, and drug trafficking charges — but received a lenient sentence of two years after providing testimony against the Nine Trey Gangsta Bloods gang.
Since his release from custody, Tekashi 6ix9ine — born Daniel Hernandez — has been making waves on social media, firing back at criticism of his decision to testify against gang members in exchange for a lighter sentence, and getting into high-profile social media spats with other artists.
While his increased notoriety may be helping his career — his recently debuted track “Trollz,” featuring Nicki Minaj, debuted at number one on the Billboard Hot 100 — Hernandez's lawyers are reportedly worried that he may be putting his life in danger.
“I’m concerned,” Dawn Florio, a lawyer for the rapper, told The New York Post. “Lots of people condemn Danny for cooperating with the government. Even a young gang member who wants to make a name for himself could try something. He’s in great spirits but I won’t rest easy until he’s located in a different state with 24-hour security.”
Facing numerous gang-related charges, Hernandez took the stand in September and spoke out against his former associates in the Nine Trey Gangsta Bloods, explaining that his role in the gang was to make music and money, and to fund various illegal activities. In exchange for this, he said was afforded “credibility” and the gang’s protection, according to USA Today.
Although he initially faced nearly 40 years in prison, he was sentenced in December to only two years, to be followed by five years of probation and 300 hundred hours of community service. He was also given credit for time served — meaning he'd be eligible for release in 2020, according to NBC New York.
Hernandez was released from federal prison in April, four months before he was due to complete the remainder of his two-year sentence, CNN reported. The rapper’s legal team filed a request the previous month for a judge to allow Hernandez to serve out the rest of his sentence at home for his own safety, as his “severe asthma” placed him at risk of COVID-19, according to the outlet.
Although his cooperation with prosecutors made him eligible for the witness protection program, Hernandez declined and instead relies on private security to keep him safe, The Post reported.
Following his release, rappers like Snoop Dogg and Meek Mill have criticized Hernandez and his fans, but he seems largely undeterred, posting frequently on social media and going live on Instagram to an audience of millions in May.
However, his social media presence may have some drawbacks. Hernandez was forced to relocate last month after a neighbor shared a photo of him on his balcony on social media and leaked his home address, according to TMZ.