WATCH: 21 Savage Tells ‘GMA’ He Was Targeted by ICE
by Derêka K. Bennett
21 Savage was released on bond just a few days ago after being arrested on February 3 by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). Today (Feb. 15), tha rapper say down with “Good Morning America” to talk about the arrest. Watch the full interview below.
21 Savage said that he was “definitely targeted” by officials. When GMA asked Savage what happened, he responded, “I don’t even know, I was just driving and I just seen guns and blue lights. And then I was in the back of a car and I was gone.”
When asked if authorities told him he was under arrest, 21 said “Nah, they didn’t say nothing. They just said, ‘We got Savage.’”
21 even goes on to explain that his lawyers believe he was targeted because of his Jimmy Fallon Show performance of “A lot,” where he rapped about immigration. Adding his own opinion, 21 told GMA, “I don’t really know. I can’t really say. I would see why people would think that, but I really can’t say.”
21’s attorney Dina LaPolt also appeared on “Good Morning America.” “We are in the middle of securing his immigration status, so where’s a citizen, but it’s very, very complicated, and there’s a lot of steps that we have to go through,” said LaPolt. Alex Spiro, the lawyer that JAY-Z hired, added in that 21 was targeted because he’s a celebrity, and can use this as a way to send a message, and also, “perhaps, because of his music.”
21’s mother, Heather Joseph, wrote a lengthy note to everybody that helped spread the word about her son’s situation. “So Very Thankful…to all the wonderful Fans of 21Savage,” wrote Heather before thanking Hank Johnson, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, and others. “To Jay Z, Cardi B, Offset, J Cole, Metro Boomin, Kei, Justin and all the many many other amazing people who either spoke out and/or offered comforting words of support…To the amazing Publicity team who together worked tirelessly to keep the facts out there, to make it possible to have national awareness of his situation and helped to gather tremendous support from wonderful people from all walks of life.. We are truly thankful and forever humbled…THANK YOU.”
21 Savage’s legal team released a statement on his behalf this week, stating, “He will not forget this ordeal or any of the other fathers, sons, family members, and faceless people, he was locked up with or that remain unjustly incarcerated across the country. And he asks for your hearts and minds to be with them.”
ICE claimed that 21 was really from the United Kingdom and was “unlawfully present in the U.S.” After his arrest, the rapper did confirmed through his representatives that he was born in the U.K. However, 21 Savage said he arrived when he was 7 under an H-4 visa, where as ICE claims her arrived in 2005 at the age of 14.
The rapper clarified through his representatives that he in 2005 he left to visit the U.K. and returned that same year. His representatives also said that 21 lost legal status in 2006 “through no fault of his own” and was attempting to get another visa around the time he was arrested.