Lil Tjay‘s attorney has issued a statement explaining why the rapper found himself behind bars again after being released on bond for a gun arrest last week.
According to AllHipHop, several social media accounts reported that the rapper (real name Tione Jayden Merritt) had been arrested on gun charges for a second time this month. However, his attorney Dawn Florio explained that his arrest on Thursday (January 26) stemmed from a misunderstanding in regards to his initial arrest on January 16.
As previously reported, Lil TJay was slated to appear in court on January 20 and expected to be released from jail on a $90,000 bond following his illegal weapons charges stemming from the first arrest, which took place in New York City.
Instead, the “Calling My Phone” rapper was able to bypass the court date and simply pay his bond in order to be released, per the judge overseeing his scheduled arraignment. Evidently, that decision was not properly communicated to others connected to the case.
“He was excused from appearing in court last Friday by the arraignment judge,” Florio told AllHipHop. “Another judge revoked his bond and put him back in jail for missing court on Friday even though he was told by the first judge that he did not have [to] appear.”
The attorney went on to confirm that Lil TJay’s family paid for him to be released a second time, and that he is once again free as he awaits his trial, currently scheduled for February 14.
View this post on Instagram
Dawn Florio previously stated that the original arrest was the result of an illegal search, telling TMZ that her client was merely a passenger in the car that was pulled over and it was parked legally on the street.
The 21-year-old was en route to shoot a music video with Ice Spice for their “Gangsta Boo” collaboration in New York City when he was arrested. Florio added that once police stopped the vehicle, they did not offer a credible reason as to why they carried out a search and the gun they discovered does not belong to her client.
She also believes the NYPD targeted the Bronx rapper after he posted about the video shoot on social media.
The arrest came months after Lil Tjay suffered multiple gunshot wounds during a shooting in front of a Chipotle in Edgewater, New Jersey in June 2022.
The Bronx hitmaker was rushed into emergency surgery, and remained in the hospital for days, where he was reported to have been unconscious and breathing through a tube. Luckily, Tjay was able to make a full recovery and took to social media last August to tell his followers that, while things were “tough,” he would come back and be “stronger than ever.”
The BX native dropped his comeback single, “Beat The Odds,” two days later, thanking his fans for their continued love and support. He also released a remix to 50 Cent’s “Many Men,” addressing the near-fatal shooting and issuing a warning to the gunman.
In September, Lil Tjay made his triumphant return to the stage at Rolling Loud New York, where he delivered a 13-song set.