Philadelphia/ Crime & Emergencies
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Published on June 21, 2024
Philadelphia Influencer 'Meatball' Pleads Guilty to Looting Charges, Sentenced to Probation and Community ServiceSource: Philadelphia Police Department

Philadelphia's social media landscape saw an upheaval as Dayjia Blackwell, known by her moniker 'Meatball,' has pleaded guilty to charges stemming from her involvement in a series of lootings that took the city by storm this past September. According to FOX29, Blackwell admitted to riot with the intent to commit a felony and criminal use of a communication facility during a court appearance yesterday.

As the aftershocks of the widespread vandalism were felt across the city, Blackwell faced the legal consequences, accepting sentencing guidelines that placed her under five years of probation for each charge. In addition to the probation, she is required to complete 150 hours of community service and pay a $10,000 fine. Indicating the severity of her actions, investigators found that she livestreamed the scene, which amassed a substantial crowd of 12,000 online onlookers, potentially fanning the flames, according to NBC Philadelphia.

The situation in Philadelphia grew dire when Center City businesses alongside stores at the Roosevelt Mall became targets of the looting spree. 6ABC reports that Blackwell's video revealed her not only encouraging but also taking part in the criminal activities. This culminated in her arrest, alongside over 50 other individuals implicated in the looting incident.

Former Mayor Jim Kenney, in the tension-strewn days that followed the protests leading up to the looting, placed a significant amount of blame on Blackwell. "[She was] livestreaming the whole thing, wound up with 12,000 followers and created, basically incited, the riot," the mayor said at that time in a statement obtained by NBC Philadelphia. His words, now echoed in the results of the investigation, have cemented the role that 'Meatball' played in the upheaval that shook the city.