Tekashi 6ix9ine’s whirlwind year in hip hop got extended for possibly another year, but what’s next for him after snitching.
Tekashi 6ix9ine, whose real name is Daniel Hernandez, was first arrested on November 18, 2018, along with five other men on federal racketeering and firearms charges. He was held without bail and name-dropped as a Nine Trey Bloods gang member in the indictment that was unsealed the following day. “This gang, which included platinum-selling rap artist Tekashi 6ix9ine, wreaked havoc on New York City, engaging in brazen acts of violence,” Geoffrey S. Berman, a Manhattan attorney said in a statement. The 23-year-old rapper was later hit with nine federal charges, including racketeering, conspiracy, firearm possession, attempted murder, and more.
Just four days after his arrest, 6ix9ine was transferred to a different institution. Though his lawyer Lance Lazzaro told TMZ at the time that he was transferred for security reasons, it was later revealed that he was transferred to a facility for inmates who are ready to cooperate with the feds. This was validated earlier this year in January when the rapper pleaded guilty to the charges against him as part of the plea deal prosecutors made with him. This would see Tekashi 6ix9ine become an infamous federal informant and a public laughing stock.
“Tekashi Snitch9” was the inspiration behind many social media memes and conversations this year following the rapper’s detailed testimony. Not only did fans roast the Brooklyn rapper for his decision to squeal, but several celebrities publicly denounced him and his position as a government witness. Many ridiculed and trolled him, including Snoop Dogg, of course, 50 Cent, The Game, and more. Some even said they would never work with him again, while others determined that he was “canceled.” Then there were those who didn’t think that 6ix9ine would make it out. Among them was Charlamagne Tha God, who went as far as to say he would give the rapper fellatio if he beat the case. Hopefully, no one will ever have to see that.
Prior to this morning’s hearing, Judge Engelmayer’s chamber was inundated with letters of appeal. Tekashi’s mother asked in writing for the judge to be lenient with her humble “Danny” boy. So did the rapper’s brother, baby mama, and almost 30 others. Only a day before the hearing, the judge received two additional letters, this time from victims of the accused. The victims explained their trauma and asked the judge to consider them when sentencing the troubled rapper.
As the verdict drew close earlier this week, expert attorneys started to reveal that the New York rapper should be a free man after his sentence hearing because there was no discord between the government and the rapper’s defense team about what the sentencing should be. The pre-trial report recommended time served, and it was believed that the judge would oblige. Judge Engelmayer, however, thought that decision would serve no justice. Before handing down his verdict, the judge made it clear that 6ix9ine was not going to be freed as 13 months was not enough time for his “violent and selfish conduct.”
Tekashi 6ix9ine made one final attempt to plead for his freedom during his time on the witness stand. “I denounced being Nine Trey before the arrest,” the rapper said. “I was aware that the mother of my child was having sexual relations with Kifano Jordan. Via text messages. I was already kidnapped by Anthony Ellison. The booking agents were stealing hundreds of thousands,” he continued. “I am not a victim. I put myself into this position from Day One. I allowed them in. That was my decision.” 6ix9ine went on to tell the court, “I know God has a bigger plan for me. I want to inspire the youth that it’s never too late to change,” he said.
6ix9ine’s attorney asked that his client be awarded time served with three years of supervised release. While Judge Engelmayer agreed that the defendant deserved “a great deal of credit” for his cooperation, he was adamant that he could not bring himself to agree with Lazzaro that time served was appropriate. For the better part of a year, you were part of a violent gang. So that there is no misunderstanding,” Engelmayer said. “You used Nine Trey as a potent means of getting even with your rivals,” he continued. “You claim you ‘foolishly commingled with members of the gang’ – but it’s more than that. The attacks would not have happened without you.”
The judge decided that Tekashi 6ix9ine, legally labeled as Daniel Hernandez, would serve 24 months in federal prison with five years of supervised release. We should also point out that 69 already served 13 months in prison, for which he will get credit. The judge also ordered the rapper to complete 300 hours of community service after his release and to pay a fine of $35,000. “I do not expect you to be tempted to commit violence again,” Engelmayer told Hernandez before the verdict. “If you do, I am the judge in your case.”
A lot of people are relieved that the news is finally out regardless of what side the coin landed on. For Tekashi’s mother, who told the judge that her son was the financial provider of the family, this is great news compared to the odds her son faced. She probably would not live to see the rapper outside of a visiting room again, had he been sentenced to the full mandatory minimum term of incarceration, which was 37 years following prosecutors dropping count two for possession of a firearm. 6ix9ine also has a 4-year-old daughter who mentioned in court today saying he hasn’t spoken to her since his incarceration. As he feared he would never see her grow up, it must be quite a relief to know he won’t miss out on her entire life.
A betting site called sportsbetting.ag published odds for the Tekashi 6ix9ine case for people who wanted to turn their prediction into cash. While some profited handsomely from the result, most lost their bets against the rapper’s freedom. The odds of 6ix9ine getting out in 2020 was placed significantly higher than the odds of the rapper doing more time behind bars. This means that the betting house thought it more likely that the rapper would receive a prison sentence. There was also a bet that the rapper would cry at his sentence hearing. It is not yet confirmed how that variable panned out, but I’d say it’s most likely that the “FEFE” rapper shed at least one tear in the pressure-packed courtroom.
After a whirlwind year that saw Tekashi throw several gang members and celebrities under the bus, partner with feds, perpetuate a media frenzy, and earn the worst possible street rep, the rapper will finally be a free man in two years or less. I guess that’s the fruits of his traitor, I mean labor. Many are now wondering if he will change his mind about witness protection when the time comes. Tekashi previously reportedly said he did not want to be in the program that is in place to protect him. Instead, he would opt for the living-in-plain sight approach and had planned to recruit a personal security detail for him and his family because he intended to resume his music career when he gets out.
Tekashi 6ix9ine attorney has since confirmed that he will get credit for time served and could be released in as little as seven months, in July next year. One good behavior, he might even be out before then. The question still remains, what’s next for 69 and will he enjoy the same level of success he did in 2018?