YNW Melly's manager is speaking out against rumors claiming that he submitted evidence against the Florida rapper that attributed to Melly being arrested and charged with two counts of first-degree murder in connection to the 2018 killings of affiliates YNW Juvy and YNW Sakchaser.
During an interview with DJ Akademiks on Tuesday (April 13), Melly's manager, Jameson Francois, who also goes by the nickname Track and managed King Von prior to his tragic death last year, denounced reports that he's the reason the "Mixed Personalities" rapper has been behind bars for over two years.
"Bro, Melly clearly turned himself in," Francois explains. "Obviously, no one's in jail because of me, obviously. If a situation happened where it's a lot of things unraveling—you got the police, you got the detectives, you got the prosecutors, you got everybody trying to figure things out—so, I'm Melly's day-to-day manager. When these incidents happen, of course, the first person they're gonna put a microscope on is me. I'm with him every day. I'm moving him around. When they came, they came not only for suspects, they tried to, of course, throw me in there."
Rumors surrounding Francois' involvement in YNW Melly's arrest also includes speculation that the manager turned in the rapper's cell phone to police as evidence in the murder case. However, the manager says a warrant was issued for the phone and that he didn't willingly give it to authorities.
"If you clearly look, then you can see, they came to my house, they had a warrant, they broke down my door, took items," Francois tells. "You have other individuals that's cooperating with the police that's saying, 'Track was involved. He had the weapons. He got rid of this.' Which are all theories, of course. It's just unfortunate because my name is getting dragged into it all around the board."
Francois later explains the situation that took place leading up to him being ordered to hand over Melly's phone.
"Police even initially was like, 'The manager is deceiving the case. He's lying. He's giving false information so the narrative could change,'" he says. "Everybody at this point is looking at me from the perspective of just, legally like, this man got something to do with it. He's involved. He's gon' be a suspect. So, what happened, when Melly turned himself in, I have his items. I have his phone, I got everything. So, with the house, the warrant coming, they searching the house and everything."
The manager continues, "My lawyer comes to me and tells me, 'Hey, look, I'm not gon' lie to you. It is getting to the point where you're about to be a suspect. So, you have nothing to hide. You doing your job. So, they need to understand that everything that happened the day after the incident was you working.' So, we need to show the contract for the shows, which was in Texas and Carolina, and all type of places."
Jameson Francois' search warrant wasn't available on the Broward County Clerk's case search. However, according to YNW Melly's arrest documents, which were obtained by XXL on Friday (April 16), Francois was accused by authorities of misleading the case's investigator, providing false statements and claiming that he was unaware of Melly's whereabouts around the time of the shootings of Sakchaser and Juvy on Oct. 26, 2018. The documents note that it was later discovered that the manager spoke with Melly following the deadly incident and drove him out of the area afterwards.
Francois additionally said during the interview that he was ordered to meet with prosecutors to show proof of why Melly was out of town, which was to perform shows that had been scheduled prior.
The manager also said he found out about Melly's incident, which also involved allegedly YNW Bortlen, Melly's codefendant, the day after it happened.
Francois adds, "I found out the next morning when the world found out. I was actually chillin', I was playing 2K at the crib, enjoying being home. The next morning, I found out the same thing that happened when you guys found out. But due to certain situations that was already previously situated, like shows, travel, videos, we ended up going right back to it."
On Feb. 13, 2019, YNW Melly, born Jamell Demons, was charged by the Miramar Police Department for the Oct. 26, 2018 shooting deaths of YNW Juvy and YNW Sakchaser. Law officials accused Melly, who was accompanied by YNW Bortlen, of staging the crime scene to appear as if it were a drive-by shooting.
Melly has been behind bars at Broward County Jail in Fort Lauderdale, Fla. since Feb. 13, 2019. YNW Bortlen was released on $90,000 bond in May of 2020, but was arrested on April 12 of this year for violating the terms of his bond. Police records note that Bortlen, who was granted permission to leave his home for work, was tracked at strip clubs in Miami last month, prompting his bond to be revoked.
Check out the full interview with YNW Melly's manager below. The conversation about Melly begins around the 7:30-mark.
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