It appears as though the smug cockiness of 90 Day Fiance: Happily Ever After star Jay Smith has taken a serious blow after he was arrested for violating a Protection From Abuse order and detained by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement earlier this week. On July 4, a local strip club worker named Kayla launched a GoFundMe campaign in hopes of raising $5,000 to help the 21-year-old reality star pay for an attorney and avoid deportation because “Jay fears for his life if he is returned to Jamaica.” Kayla visited Jay in prison and later assured everyone via Jay’s Instagram account that “his GofundMe is not a scam and he is in real need of help.”
OK, I need to take a second to let that paragraph sink in.
To get you all caught up, Jay’s estranged wife Ashley Smith filed a Protection From Abuse order against Jay after he allegedly broke into her home while she was on a post-mental health stint tropical cruise last week. The order specifically barred Jay from talking about the order itself or Ashley on social media, but within 24 hours he had done both with the fore-mentioned smug cockiness.
Police were made aware of Jay’s Instagram story post, and a warrant was issued for his arrest. He turned himself in early in the AM hours on Wednesday. If it were just the PFA violation, Jay would have been released pending a hearing next week. However, due to Ashley retracting his green card application, Jay is apparently here in the United States illegally. ICE was planning to detain him on Monday, but since he was already in custody in Cumberland County, he was signed over to them and transferred to their custody at York County Prison.
Fast forward to Independence Day, and Kayla (seen in the photo above) launches a GoFundMe campaign described as “Help Free Jay Smith from Immigration Detention!”
Here is her description from the campaign, which has raised just over $1,000 of the $5,000 goal so far:
Hi everyone, I am a close friend of Jay, and I am reaching out for help on his behalf. As some people have seen or heard, Jay Smith, known from the TLC show 90 day Fiancé, is currently being detained in York County Prison on immigration detention and is facing potential deportation. Jay turned himself into authorities Tuesday night with the understanding and intent that he was to see a judge the next morning and be released after the incident regarding a social media post. The judge did release Jay regarding the social media incident and dropped the charge, however instead of being released and able to leave as a free man the way a US Citizen would, he was immediately turned over to immigration enforcement and is being held in a jail cell as if he is a convicted criminal. Jay is sitting in jail, awaiting a hearing on wether he will be deported or be allowed to make a life for himself here in the U.S… however the way our system works with immigrants is different than how they treat citizens.They will hold him for a month or months, there’s no really telling how long, before even giving him the right to see a judge. The only way for him to sooner see a judge and pretty much have basic human rights is with a good attorney. Also the only way for Jay to avoid deportation from the U.S. is with a good attorney. Jay fears for his life if he is returned to Jamaica.. he is now seen as a traitor who has turned his back on his people and they will assume he has money since he was in America and on an American TV show so that keeps him at a continuously high threat for his safety if he is returned home. Jay has not received his share of the money for being exploited on this tv show and we are asking help to obtain him a lawyer.Jay arrived here in America as a 20 year old with a positive outlook, but he has landed in a severely difficult and unjust situation. This young man has been exploited on national television and as any real person knows tv is always far from the actual truth.The sad truth, the shocking truth is not what people are seeing. However, most importantly here, there is an innocent man being held for who knows how long. The disgusting part is how long the system will hold an immigrant before giving them the opportunity to appear in front of a judge. Innocent people sit for 3 months sometimes until they are given the chance to plead for their freedom. I do not want this for my friend. I have visited him and he is his upbeat and positive self as much as he can be right now but he needs our help. Isolation like this strips a person of basic human rights and a makes a person go insane, he is innocent and he’s doing the best he can. Help this innocent, sweet, happy man fight for his freedom!
Fans were a little suspicious of some random woman starting a GoFundMe campaign, but Jay’s Instagram account shared a link in his bio shortly after it was launched.
Kayla says she has since visited Jay in prison, and he apparently gave her access to his Instagram account as she posted the following update on it earlier today:
So I went to the jail today and saw Jay.. he asked me to reach out on here and let everyone know that his GofundMe is not a scam and he is in real need of help. He is doing everything he can to keep his spirits lifted, he’s been reading a lot of books and making phone calls when he can, but he is truly sad and starting to feel depression and anxiety. His smile and the glow in his eyes never fades though, he still lights right up. I keep telling him to stay strong and reminding him how many people care and are working to help him, and how many people are actually realizing how wrong this whole situation is now. Please support Jay anyway you can if you have ever been touched by his unique energy ? this man deserves freedom from this cruel and unreasonable punishment. Free jay!! ?? Link in bio!!
On her own Instagram account, Kayla responded to questions about whether or not she was the young lady that Jay gave the D to in the barber shop bathroom, and also why she refuses to share any more information on “the truth” about Ashley that Jay has teased:
COMMENT: Hi are you the girl from the barbershop?
KAYLA: hi no, I’m not.
COMMENT: You got caught cheating on her they split she got a PFA on him then he broke the PFA and she never updated his green card so that’s why he’s in this situation
KAYLA: there’s way way way more to it. What was on tv is not a true portrayal of the actual situation, there’s a lot left out and it is dramatized to make him look bad, it’s not an actually representation of their real relationship issues whatsoever and that’s all I can say right now.
COMMENT: Kayla, other people would be more inclined to help if we knew his side. Why can’t you or Poochie [Jay’s sister] tell us (that way it’s not coming directly from him so he’s not in more trouble). Everyone keeps threatening to tell “the truth” and I wish they would! Ps I can’t stand Ashley. Just sayin! Let’s hear it already!
COMMENT: It’s so lovely that you’re trying to help him but we are all just tired of the lies and I see no reason why “his side” can’t be released from someone other than him to avoid breaking any PFA’s NDA’s IDGAF’s etc. What did Ashley do that he’s protecting and why? Why continue to take the bullet for her? Please help us understand. We all realize reality tv is anything but…however at this point, I think if we are being asked to help we need to know WHY. The real story! ?
KAYLA: can not due to legal issues ?
COMMENT: even you or Poochie? Why is Ashley allowed to and he’s not? ?
KAYLA: none myself nor his other friends or family want to risk getting him in more trouble, it may be assumed he’s doing wrong through a third party and he could be punished more. We literally can not speak on the matter at all, at this point we can only try to help him see freedom.
COMMENT: it’s awful she’s allowed to run her mouth but he’s not able to share his side ?
UPDATE #90DayFiance #HappilyEverAfter Ashley explains why Jay was arrested & shares details about his immigration status. “I still have a great deal of love for him so it isn’t easy…Picturing my husband in jail is the worst feeling in the world.” ? https://t.co/vtgg6u2rvA
— Starcasm (@starcasm) July 3, 2019
UPDATE – More from Kayla via Jay’s Instagram account:
KAYLA: Jay called this morning and the sadness in his voice today is the first I’ve heard it like this. My heart breaks for him. Anyone who is close to Jay, knows Jay, and really knows the situation, knows this is NOT OKAY. This isn’t for media or tv at all anymore, this is someone’s LIFE! Free this happy soul!! ?? #weloveyoujay #freejay link in bio ??
COMMENT: Why are you acting like he’s being sent to the jungle naked & broke!? He had a whole life in Jamaica before Ashley & seemed fine???
KAYLA: he’s incarcerated right now and could be for months, he can not see the light of day, they don’t have one window in there and without an attorneys help he can sit and sit for A LONG TIME. That is cruel and unusual punishment regarding the situation. This is all over TV show drama. It’s so sad. It’s so wrong. And as far as the threats Jay has from Jamaica, that is facts coming from Jay. I do not post anything he has not told me to say.
COMMENT: so are you the stripper he’s banging?
KAYLA: I’m only making one attempt at clearing this up bc honestly I do not care. People worrying about who I am and our relationship is not what’s important right now, but 1. I’m not a stripper 2. I did not meet Jay when he was still with his wife 3. I did not have any relations w Jay on the show.
* I want to clarify that we never stated Kayla is a stripper. She has posted numerous photos working at a local gentleman’s club, but it does appear that she is a waitress (or bottle girl or something similar) and not a dancer.
Some folks have pointed out that GoFundMe has a policy against allowing fundraising campaigns for legal expenses, which is true in part. In their terms and conditions, GoFundMe includes in their list of prohibited content: “campaigns we deem, in our sole discretion, to be in support of, or for the legal defense of alleged crimes associated with hate, violence, harassment, bullying, discrimination, terrorism, or intolerance of any kind relating to race, ethnicity, national origin, religious affiliation, sexual orientation, sex, gender or gender identity, or serious disabilities or diseases.”
Although Jay was initially detained for violating a Protection From Abuse order, which could certainly be classified as a charge associated with harassment, the campaign is raising funds to fight his deportation — which is more because of his unfiled status update than the PFA violation. Of course, the PFA violation (as well as any other alleged violent and harassing acts toward Ashley) might be used in his deportation case, so I suppose it is a grey area. I assume the campaign has already bee reported hundreds of times, so I am guessing that it is currently being reviewed by the people at GoFundMe.
What do you think? Does Jay have any argument for remaining in the United States, even if his horrific ? show of a marriage was mostly Ashley’s fault?
Asa Hawks is a writer and editor for Starcasm. You can contact Asa via Twitter, Facebook, or email at starcasmtips(at)yahoo.com