Robert Maraj, Nicki Minaj's father, was killed on Feb. 13, 2021 in a hit-and-run on Long Island, according to police. Robert was transported to a hospital following the crash, where he died as a result of his injuries. Naturally, Nicki's fanbase, "The Barbs," long called for justice to be served for Nicki and her loved ones. And now the man responsible for the crime has been sentenced.
Here's what to know — including details on Nicki's parents and her relationship with them.
Charles Polevich has been sentenced to a year in prison for murdering Nicki Minaj's father.
According to TMZ, Charles Polevich — the man responsible for the February 2021 hit-and-run incident in Mineola, N.Y., that claimed the life of Nicki's father — has been sentenced.
Polevich reportedly pleaded guilty to two charges — tampering with physical evidence and leaving the scene of an incident without reporting — and was sentenced to one year behind bars by Nassau County Judge Howard Sturim.
Understandably, Carol Maraj, Nick's mother, is upset with the verdict. And the judge suspending Polevich's license for six months on top of a $5,000 fine means absolutely nothing to the Maraj family.
"One year? That’s a slap in the face for the family,” Carol reportedly told the judge, per The New York Post. “[He] just left him on a street like a dog.”
Aside from the blatant slap on the wrist, Polevich's lawyer, Marc Gann, shares that the 72-year-old will probably only serve eight months. Keep in mind, prosecutors initially recommended a one- to three-year sentence.
So, why did the judge hand down such a light sentence? The publication shares that Polevich was not inebriated or under the influence of drugs when the crime occurred and he has no criminal record.
“I feel deep sadness and remorse for the loss of Robert Maraj’s life," Polevich reportedly said in court. “I feel compassion for his wife, Mrs. Maraj, and [his] family."
Polevich went on to share that he "had no malicious intent" and wants to accept responsibility for his actions.
Fans are disgusted with the verdict and are hoping that the "Do We Have a Problem" hitmaker challenges the sentence.
Here's what else to know about Nicki Minaj's parents.
Nicki's mother is Carol Maraj, and both she and Robert are of Afro-Trinidadian ancestry. Nicki was born in St. James in 1982, and her mother worked in payroll and accounting departments for much of Nicki's youth. Robert was a financial executive, and both of them were also gospel singers. Nicki has four siblings and was the middle child of the group. Her older siblings are Jelani and Maya, and her younger siblings are Micaiah and Ming.
Nicki and one of her siblings lived with a grandparent on St. James before the family eventually moved to the Bronx so their mother could attend Monroe College. Throughout much of her childhood, her father was addicted to alcohol and drugs and was also known to have a violent temper. In one particularly horrific story, Robert burned their house down in St. James in December of 1987.
Nicki has acknowledged her father's abusive behavior in interviews.
In a 2015 interview with The New York Times, Nicki said that while her father had never abused her, specifically, he was an abusive man. “I would always hear him yelling and cursing, always. And it made me feel it was the way to interact because that’s how I saw him interacting.’’ In a 2010 interview with Rolling Stone, Nicki said that she had always seen money as a fix for her problems, especially when it came to her father.
She explained that she wanted money so that she could take care of her mother, which would allow her mother to leave her father.
“That was always what drove me,” she explained. “I was disappointed in my father. I was afraid, very afraid, that something would happen to my mother. I had nightmares about it.”
Aside from Nicki's shaky past with her father, the tragedy of his passing has taken a huge toll on the star. Per People, Nicki first broke her silence about Robert's death on her website in May 2021.
"Although I can't really bring myself to discuss the passing of my father as yet; I can say it has been the most devastating loss of my life," she wrote. "I find myself wanting to call him all the time. More so now that he's gone. Life is funny that way."
The star also posted a birthday tribute to her father on Instagram on May 16, 2021.
Our thoughts and prayers are with Nicki and her family at this time.