Silento, the Atlanta rapper best known for the 2015 hit “Watch Me (Whip/Nae Nae),” was refused bond during a hearing in DeKalb County, Georgia on Wednesday, June 9. He was charged with the shooting death of his cousin in January.
Silento, whose true name is Richard Lamar Hawk, was arrested in DeKalb County, Georgia, on February 1 in connection with the January 21 shooting death of his 34-year-old cousin Frederick Rooks.
“Today, Ricky Hawk, 23, was arrested for the murder of his cousin Frederick Rooks, 34. On January 21, the DeKalb County Police Department investigated Rooks’ death after he was found shot on Deep Shoals Circle. Hawk is in the DeKalb County Jail charged with Murder. #WeAreDKPD,” the DeKalb police department tweeted in February.
The rapper was asking for a $25k bond, pledging to the court that he would not attempt to run. Silento’s motion was denied by the judge, who cited his mental health concerns and refusal to take medication prescribed for him as reasons.
The rapper’s denial of his mental state, as well as his earlier exit from a mental health treatment institution, alarmed the judge. Silento’s grandparents were also against him having a bond. His lawyers also claimed that his problems were caused by his bipolar condition and other psychiatric disorders. They also referred to Silento as a “local treasure” who served on the Governor’s Blue-Ribbon council, urging children to abstain from drugs and alcohol, but the judge declined.
Rooks was discovered dead in the street with multiple gunshot wounds to his face and leg, and investigators located eight bullet shells around his body. The rapper, who is 23 years old, will be held in detention until his trial date is set.
Silento rose to prominence after his single “Watch Me (Whip/Nae Nae)” went six times platinum and spawned a Nickelodeon remix.