Rapper 21 Savage was arrested by ICE on Sunday, Feb. 3, in Atlanta, and now he's facing deportation. According to a statement from ICE spokesperson Bryan Cox, the rapper (whose given name is Shayaabin Abraham-Joseph) is a citizen of the U.K. who came to the U.S. legally at the age of 13 in 2005, but illegally stayed after his visa expired in July 2006. Elite Daily reached out to the rapper's team for comment on the arrest, but did not hear back by the time of publication. The news came as a surprise to fans, and in true internet fashion, the memes have been flowing. When Demi Lovato joined in on laughing at the memes, however, the internet was not amused. And Demi Lovato deleted her Twitter after backlash from people on social media that got arguably too intense.
According to the Associated Press, Abraham-Joseph's arrest was a targeted operation. In an emailed statement to the Associated Press, Cox said of the arrest,
Mr. Abraham-Joseph is presently in ICE custody in Georgia and has been placed into removal proceedings before the federal immigration courts. ICE will now await the outcome of his case before a federal immigration judge to determine future actions.
Abraham-Joseph was reportedly previously arrested in 2014 for felony drug charges, but was not arrested by ICE at that time. Cox addressed the October 2014 arrest in his statement, according to ABC News.
"We were not aware of his immigration status in 2014 and we have since obtained the information," he said. "He was arrested by local law enforcement agencies [in 2014] and given that we weren’t aware, it didn’t trigger a warning subsequent to all that."
Dina LaPolt, one of Abraham-Joseph's lawyers, said in a statement,
We are working diligently to get Mr. Abraham-Joseph out of detention while we work with the authorities to clear up any misunderstandings. Mr. Abraham-Joseph is a role model to the young people in this country, especially in Atlanta, Georgia, and is actively working in the community leading programs to help underprivileged youths in financial literacy.
Following the news of his arrest, people on Twitter couldn't get over the revelation that the rapper is reportedly British.
They started tweeting memes about it, because of course they did.
Before she deleted her account, Lovato tweeted, "So far 21 savage memes have been my favorite part of the Super Bowl." She also tweeted a meme that was circulating on Twitter.
People started tweeting at Lovato saying her tweet was insensitive and inappropriate, but comments got even more intense on Instagram.
Lovato posted a screenshot of the meme she tweeted to her Instagram story during the Super Bowl.
She then posted screenshots of comments people were making on her Instagram. The singer was bombarded with negative comments about her overdose and life with addiction.
She responded to the comments on her Instagram story.
"Wasn't laughing at anyone getting deported. I know that's not a joke.. not have I EVER laughed at that," she said in the post. "The meme I posted/was talking about was of him being writing with a feather pen. Sorry if I offended anyone. But it's no excuse to laugh at someone's addiction let alone their OD."
In a subsequent post on her Instagram story, Lovato said,
Lastly, I wasn't making fun on anything having to do with deportation or even anything against him. I was laughing at who the f*ck knew 21 was British? Literally no one.That's it. It doesn't go deeper than that. I'm sorry if I upset people truly.
She also directed a comment on the post at rapper Wale, who commented on the whole situation on Instagram as well.
Before deleting her Twitter account Lovato tweeted, “If you’re gonna come at me for making a joke, try coming at me with some original not involving drugs.”
The last thing she tweeted before deactivating the account said, “F*ck Twitter. This is why I don’t tweet anymore."
All of the memes about 21 Savage's arrest are insensitive, so Lovato's tweet was in poor taste. But that doesn't make cheap shots about her overdose acceptable. Two wrongs don't make a right.