Attorney says 12-year-old rapper treated harshly during arrest at mall

Posted at 6:39 PM, Oct 18, 2018
and last updated 2018-10-18 20:39:02-04

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    ATLANTA, GA (WGCL) — A 12-year-old rapper is speaking out after being arrested at Cumberland Mall, just northwest of downtown Atlanta.

The rapper’s attorney says he was treated harshly because he’s an African-American boy.

Corey J was inside the food court at the mall when he was grabbed by an officer and threatened with arrest.

He’s known around the country by his stage name, Lil C Note. His viral acts haven taken him to the The Ellen DeGeneres Show.

Video shows him being grabbed and detained by a Cobb County police officer earlier in October. He’d been in trouble twice for selling CD’s in the mall.

His attorney says the arrest is unlawful.

“There is absolutely no reason to justify the way he was treated,” says attorney Gerald Griggs.

The rapper and youth motivator is now charged with felony obstruction, among other charges, and was released to his dad.

Griggs says he wants to see the officer disciplined as the investigation goes on.

“I think they could’ve deescalated the situation,” says Griggs. “I’ve seen the girl scouts out there, I’ve seen children with members of sports teams soliciting individuals. I’ve never seen a child treated like that at Cumberland Mall. I think that this particular case should’ve been handled differently, and I think that we have another situation of another young African-American male treated differently than other members of the community.”

On Wednesday, Corey took to Instagram to defend himself.

“I have never said a bad word in my life,” said Corey on the social media platform. “My mama and daddy has never pulled me and tugged me how that officer did, and my arm could’ve been pulled out of the socket. Even when I said, ‘let me go,’ I still said, ‘Sir,’ still being as mannerable as possible.”

Corey J’s aunt was arrested and charged as well. Griggs says they believe she could’ve helped de-escalate the incident.

As for the child being charged with a felony, Griggs says in Georgia, there are certain charges like murder and rape where 12-year-old’s can be tried for felonies. He expects this charge to be lowered.

Police say it was the officer’s choice to charge the child with a felony.

Protesters staged a sit-in on the bottom floor of the mall Wednesday night to demand that the charges be dropped.

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