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The saga of Bobby Shmurda - Time in jail to 'giving back to the streets'

Darcy Rafter August 4, 2022
Power 105.1's Powerhouse 2014 - Backstage reaching out at the camera with a towel in his hand, smiling backstage wearing a black top with a gold chain.
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Bobby Shmurda is turning 27 years old today, August 4, so let’s take a look inside his life so far from being in hail to having a reformed lust for life.

Bobby has recently announced a new nine-song EP called BodBoy releasing on August 5, through his own label GS9. BadBoy marks Bobby Shmurda’s first collection of new songs post-jail and fans can’t wait to hear what he has been cooking up.

As Shmurda is getting back on his hip-hop grind, let’s take a look at his past from how he garnered a wide fan base to his first run-in with the cops.

The saga of Bobby Shmurda

Photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for Roc Nation

Bobby Shmurda was born Ackquille Jean Pollard on August 4, 1994, in Miami, Florida. He’s half-Trinidadian and half-Jamaican and is the youngest of two brothers. 

Shmurda’s mother Leslie Pollard moved the family to East Flatbush, Brooklyn, following his father’s sentencing. Shmurda’s father Gervase Johnson is currently still in jail after receiving a life sentence for an attempted murder charge. He was convicted over in 1995. 

The rapper recently shared an update on his dad’s case on Instagram. He said: “Let’s Goooooooooo My boy got Ah court date #FREEE Pop dukes,” Shmurda wrote alongside a photo of his father. He confessed that he “ain’t been on the street since I was two months old.”

Bobby Shmurda’s rise to fame

Photo by Bennett Raglin/BET/Getty Images for BET

Shmurda spent his childhood on the streets of New York and when his brother Javase started dealing drugs in ninth grade, Bobby followed in his steps. His brother later took a plea deal after pleading guilty to conspiracy charges and faced three years in jail, writes NY Post.

Therefore, he has had multiple run-ins with the police, his first being at the age of 12. Bobby told NPR, “They came in the Chinese store and pulled my pants down all the way to my ankles,” he explained. “They found a piece of crack and they locked me up. Ever since that day, every time they see me, they just run down on me.”

Shmurda even served 15 months in a juvenile detention center for a probation violation. However, after returning home from the stint at 17 years old, Bobby found a new passion for music and rapping.

In March 2014, Bobby Shmurda uploaded a video for his debut single Hot N**** to YouTube. Epic Records signed him and released the single that summer, peaking at No. 6 on the Billboard Hot 100. Shmurda’s music career was just about to take off…

Shmurda’s life behind bars explored

Photo by Johnny Nunez/WireImage

In December 2014, police raided the studio Quad Recording in Manhattan and arrested Shmurda.

The Sun reported that Bobby Shmurda, then 20, pleaded guilty to two counts of conspiracy to possess weapons and possession of a weapon.

In 2016, Bobby Shmurda was sentenced to seven years in jail. It was reduced to five years after he had already served two years whilst awaiting trial. However, he attempted to withdraw his plea, claiming his attorney “forced” him to take it, as per reports.

Whilst in jail, the rapper was accused of receiving a “sharpened metal instrument” during a visit from his girlfriend, according to Complex. The New York City Department of Correction, then assigned Shmurda to a first-degree charge of “promoting prison contraband.”

However, prosecutors offered the rapper a plea deal in 2017. It lessened the charge to “attempted promoting of prison contraband”. Bobby pleaded guilty to the lesser charge which extended his sentence by an additional 1.3 to four years. 

Bobby Shmurda gets a reformed lust for life

Photo by Johnny Nunez/WireImage

Following six years in prison, Shmurda was released from Clinton Correctional Facility, New York, in February 2021, according to the New York State Department of Corrections.  

In an interview with Billboard, fellow rapper, Quavo, revealed he would personally be picking Bobby up from the facility. “I’m going to get my guy,” he said. “I’m personally gonna go pick up Bobby Shmurda.”

Shmurda told New York Times that he has changed a lot since being behind bars: “…I feel like being locked up, it made me smarter. It made me stronger. And it made me badder, but in a good way.”

He continued, “Instead of saying, boom, ‘I want to go in the streets and cause hell,’ I’m saying, ‘I want to go in the streets and give back.’ I feel like that’s gangster.”

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Darcy is an experienced journalist passionate about celebrity culture and entertainment. After gaining a degree in Media and Communications at Goldsmiths University she has also become a social media specialist, always keeping informed on the latest trends. With almost five years of experience in media, her expertise is analysing platforms such as Instagram, Twitter and TikTok. When she's not tracking the latest trending content, she’s watching films and eating lots of chocolate.