Meek Mill, the Philly rapper turned criminal justice-reform advocate, showed up at the Cosmopolitan Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas on Saturday evening to see a DJ Mustard show and was surprised to be turned away at the door. If he didn’t leave, a Cosmopolitan staffer told him, he’d be arrested for a misdemeanor.
“I’m not accusing you of doing anything," the staffer says, as shown by video footage of the incident.
The staffer then offers this by way of explanation: “This is way bigger than me.”
Mill, born Robert Rihmeek Williams, and his lawyer, Joe Tacopina, are saying it’s because Mill is black.
In a letter sent to the Cosmopolitan, Tacopina writes: “We have learned that the Cosmopolitan maintains a list of African American recording artists who should be denied access for no other reason than their culture and skin color.”
In a statement, the Cosmopolitan said it did not comment on legal matters. “Our guests’ safety and security always remains our top priority,” it said.
>> READ MORE: A chronology of the Meek Mill Case
Mill was released on bail in April 2018, ending a five-month stint in prison during which such high-profile supporters as Michael Rubin, the billionaire 76ers limited partner, called into question the credibility of the Philadelphia judge who put him away on a probation violation. Most recently, District Attorney Larry Krasner filed a brief saying that the judge, Genece E. Brinkley, is biased against Mill and should not oversee his appeal.
Mill, who has been on probation for 11 years, is currently fighting for probation reform.