Singer Mario was slammed online after his support letter for now-controversial rapper Tory Lanez went viral.
Lanez was handed a 10-year prison sentence on Tuesday (Aug. 8) after he was found guilty of shooting Megan Thee Stallion in 2020, and the public is now learning which individuals took part in supporting him. After Iggy Azalea received backlash for being one of the many people who wrote a letter to the judge on Lanez’s behalf, Mario’s letter has now become public record as well.
Legal affairs journalist Meghann Cuniff, who has been providing a play-by-play on Twitter of the entire trial, shared on Monday (Aug. 7) that Judge Herriford received over 70 letters in support of Lanez. Cuniff was able to obtain the notes in full, and uploaded a photo of Mario’s message.
He began by briefly explaining his background and friendship with the “Say It” singer to the judge. “My name is Mario Berrett, and I am a recording artist and business man. I am good friends with Tory Lanez and have known Tory for over seven years,” he wrote.
R & B singer Mario also wrote a letter to the judge ahead of Tory Lanez being sentenced to 10 years in prison for shooting Megan Thee Stallion.
"I have never seen Tory act out of character in a manner to hurt someone."
– Mario Barrett pic.twitter.com/tvX7Oe0CRe
— Meghann Cuniff (@meghanncuniff) August 10, 2023
The second paragraph included the “Just A Friend” singer’s thoughts about Tory and his relationship with his family, citing his own experiences. “One of the things I love about Tory the most is how deeply he cares about his family… Growing up without a father, I admired that he was fortunate enough to grow up with his. Those conversations revealed how much of a standup person Tory is,” he continued.
Elsewhere in the note, Mario commends the Canadian artist for his “hard work,” “drive,” and for giving back to the community. He mentioned Tory’s son again, saying, “I can only hope that Tory will be able to be there for his son during the most formative years of his life.”
The Step Up actor concluded by insisting the case came “as a surprise to so many of us who know Tory personally” and that he has never seen Tory “act out of character in a manner to hurt someone.” He then brought the letter to a close by saying, “All I can ask and pray for is that he and his son are treated fairly.”
Mario and Lanez have not only been friends for several years, but collaborated on music as well. The “Music For Love” crooner appeared on the latter’s Chixtape 5 project in 2019 on the song “The Cry.” In 2022, Mario released a single titled “Main One” featuring Tory. After receiving backlash for the feature he selected, the original version of the track was taken down, and a new edition was released with guest appearances from Tyga and Lil Wayne.