Marcus Luther, a Gogglebox celebrity, joined a criminal group but swiftly departed after pondering what may happen in the future.
Marcus’s own brother was stabbed and shot, therefore he is now focused on providing better possibilities for young people.
Marcus is speaking out about his experience after exchanging analysing TV episodes for time in prison for the reality show, Banged Up.
He reflected on his youth in Croydon’s Thornton Heath while imprisoned at Victorian penitentiary HMP Shrewsbury alongside a slew of ex-cons and other celebs, including former EastEnders actor Sid Owen and musician HRVY.
‘I’ve never got in trouble with the police but I am from an area where everybody does and even family members do. All my friends have been stabbed, shot or whatever,’ he said.
‘I had a choice to get in the car and go do the robbery, but I chose not to.’
Marcus is grateful to his parents and sisters for being rigorous and keeping him on track.
‘That helped me as well but it was still a choice I made. My brother was in a gang and he has been stabbed and shot at. It happens. Even I was in a gang for a week, but I realised it wasn’t for me,’ he told The Sun.
‘I knew that I didn’t want to go to prison and let people down.’
Instead, the business-savvy reality star has been working since he was 14, motivated by successful people in his community.
‘Everybody I knew that was rich owned a scaffolding firm, a waste removal company or they had degrees, so I thought, that’s how I can make money and I’m not going to have police breathing down my neck,’ he shared.
Marcus also runs a boxing gym to assist kids stay out of trouble, and he is very protective of them all. He even refers to the hundred students that attend the classes as his children.
Marcus was away from his spouse Mica Ven, with whom he appeared on Gogglebox for five years until leaving in December, and his kids Shiloh, 24, and Yashua, 14, as well as Mica’s daughters Sachelle, 25, and Shuggy, 20.
The distance from his family was particularly tough on the day of Yashua’s fight for England: ‘I bawled my eyes out because that’s the first fight I’ve missed and we’ve been training for a few years.’
Marcus and Mica, 44, stated their reasons for leaving Gogglebox in December, despite their popularity.
‘We’ve had so much fun with you all tuning in at home and the hardworking Gogglebox crews but it’s time to put down the remote and see what else God has in store for us,’ they wrote in a joint statement.
Mica, who was on Celebrity MasterChef earlier this year, has stated that she would return to the show in a heartbeat.
‘I miss everything. I love them. I love them so much. The production team, the actual show being a part of it – it was definitely the best,’ she said.
‘We still feel like they’re huge boots to fill. It was a wonderful platform to come into the industry on Gogglebox and you don’t have to learn any lines. I don’t have time to learn the lines. And I was working from home, I didn’t have to travel far, I was working next to my man and I like him!
‘If the opportunity came up, I would a hundred percent go back. But I don’t think it works like that.’
Banged Up airs on Channel 4 tonight at 9.15pm.