Despite contracting the coronavirus, US rapper YNW Melly must stay in prison while he waits to stand trial for two counts of first-degree murder.
In court, the 20-year-old’s lawyers argued that he was in danger of dying due to complications from the disease and said he was receiving inadequate care in jail.
The “Mixed Personalities” singer was seeking hospital treatment and also asked to move from where he was currently housed in Broward County Florida Jail to house arrest.
Melly’s release has since been rejected, as TMZ reports, although according to reports the judge has allowed him to request special medical treatment from the Broward Sheriff’s Office.
His legal team first announced plans to file a motion for restricted release in the wake of the diagnosis two weeks ago.
“The jails and prisons in this country are creating an extremely dangerous situation by not providing hand sanitiser and proper hygiene care,” Melly’s attorney Bradford Cohen told local press. “I have prepared and will be filing an emergency motion in the morning for his conditional release.”
Melly – real name Jamell Maurice Demons – was charged in February last year with allegedly killing two men: 19-year-old Christopher Thomas Jr and 21-year-old Anthony Williams, whom police have described as his lifelong friends.
Investigators have alleged that Melly, along with another man, tried to make it appear as though the men died in a drive-by shooting.
In the filing, prosecutors say they believe they can “prove beyond a reasonable doubt” that the alleged capital felony was committed for “pecuniary gain”, that it was “especially heinous, atrocious, or cruel”, and that it was committed by a gang member.