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Sirens & Gavels

Posts tagged: Rap

Drive-by shooting kills ‘Dougie’ rapper

INGLEWOOD, Calif. (AP) M-Bone of the rap group Cali Swag District, which scored a hit last year with the song “Teach Me How to Dougie,” was killed in a weekend drive-by shooting as he sat in a car outside a liquor store, police said Monday.

The motive for Sunday night's shooting was under investigation, Lt. James Madia said.

The 22-year-old Inglewood man, whose real name is Mante Ray Talbert, was sitting alone in his car shortly after 10:30 p.m.

“Another car pulled alongside, gunshots were fired, and the victim was struck twice in the head,” Madia said.

Talbert died at a hospital.

Witnesses gave varying descriptions of the fleeing car, Madia said.

Talbert was “the victim of a random act of violence,” said a statement from Cali Swag District's publicist, Greg Miller.

“He was a hardworking, passionate artist and dancer that will be deeply missed,” Miller said.

Bandmate C-Smoove tweeted Monday that his life changed drastically in the blink of an eye, and added “rip mbone.”

Cali Swag District's hit “Teach Me How to Dougie” is based on the “Dougie” dance, which first appeared in Texas and is noted for its leaning stances, shoulder and arm movements.

The dance was not only performed in dance clubs and the streets but by celebrities as well, from Wolf Blitzer to Washington Wizards star John Wall; even first lady Michelle Obama recently performed the dance as part of her “Let's Move” initiative.

“Teach Me How to Dougie” spent several months in the top 10 of Billboard's hot rap songs. The group also performed the dance on several television shows.

Files released in Notorious BIG’s murder

In this Dec. 6, 1995 file photo, rapper Notorious B.I.G., who won rap artist and rap single of the year, clutches his awards at the podium during the annual Billboard Music Awards in New York.

By ANTHONY McCARTNEY, AP Entertainment Writer

LOS ANGELES (AP) — FBI agents on both coasts participated in a nearly two-year investigation aimed at finding out who gunned down the Notorious B.I.G. and whether any Los Angeles police officers were involved, according to recently released records.

The inquiry ended in early 2005, after federal prosecutors concluded there wasn't enough evidence to pursue a case against any officers or another man implicated in the rapper's 1997 shooting death.

The decision was made after agents in Los Angeles, San Diego and New York tried to track down potential suspects and witnesses who might shed new light on the unsolved killing that came months after another rap superstar, Tupac Shakur, was shot dead in Las Vegas.

The investigation started out as a civil rights violation and public corruption review, but efforts were made to solve the homicide case. The FBI's file included police reports.

Informants told the FBI that the killing of B.I.G., whose real name was Christopher Wallace, may have been aided by corrupt police officers. The heavily redacted files include several mentions of sources who wouldn't talk to Los Angeles police investigators about Wallace's death because of suspicions about corruption.

The records showed that agents conducted surveillance on one man in San Diego who they thought may have fired the fatal shots at Wallace, and even went through his mail and garbage. They also showed an agent consulted frequently with a civil attorney who was pursuing a wrongful death on behalf of Wallace's estate against the city of Los Angeles.

No one has been arrested for Wallace or Shakur's killings, although both deaths have been the subject of rampant speculation about the motives. The one-time friends became rivals and instigators in an East Coast-West Coast rap rivalry during the mid-1990s.

Wallace was fatally shot with a 9mm gun on Wilshire Boulevard in March 1997 after leaving a Los Angeles music industry event.

The FBI released Wallace's file on March 27 on its website, The Vault, which contains the bureau's most requested case documents that can be released. The FBI on Friday publicized that it had added more than 25 new files that it had never released electronically and by Wednesday, fans and journalists were poring over the Wallace file.

Wallace's family dismissed a federal lawsuit against Los Angeles last year, which their attorney said was done in order for the FBI and other agencies to pursue new leads in the case. A 2005 trial ended with a mistrial after attorneys for Wallace's family discovered the city had withheld a trove of LAPD documents.

Attorney Brad C. Gage said Wednesday he had not reviewed the recently released FBI documents.

Risky fugitive? Not quite, lawyer says

A Spokane woman wanted on a robbery charge was named a dangerous fugitive by Crime Stoppers a week after her public defender filed paperwork objecting to her arrest warrant.

 Monica R. “Boo” Sanders, 33, pleaded not guilty to first-degree robbery Thursday and had her warrant recalled, said her lawyer, Tracy Scott Collins.

Collins said the public has no reason to fear Sanders.

“She doesn’t have any history - just this one case - and it involved somebody that she knew,” Collins said.

Sanders is a single mother with no previous criminal convictions, though Crime Stoppers said she has a 19-year arrest record. Sanders was charged Nov. 17 for an incident in September in which an $18,000 piece of jewelry worn during the filming of a rap music video led to a robbery and assault that included the theft of the victim’s pants.

Several others are charged in the case.

“She is probably one of the ones who was least involved in the whole thing,” Collins said.

Sanders’ trial is scheduled to begin Feb. 28.

Police say group stole man’s bling, pants

An $18,000 piece of jewelry worn during the filming of a rap music video led to a robbery and assault that included theft of the victim’s pants, according to court documents filed Friday.

Spokane police gang unit members as well as police and sheriff’s SWAT teams raided two homes Thursday in an ongoing investigation targeting eight suspects.

Three suspects, Monica R. “Boo” Sanders, 32, Tasha M. Tensley, 26, and Roderick J. Thomas, 21, remain in Spokane County Jail on $75,000 bond each after appearing in court Friday. Police still were looking for five others late Friday.

The group is accused of beating Jeffrey J. Frazier, 29, and shocking him with a stun gun before stealing his jewelry, including the diamond-studded, acorn-shaped gold medallion, then removing his jeans.

Read my full story here.

Jury acquits gunman in rapper Dolla’s killing

LOS ANGELES (AP) — A jury has acquitted a man of killing Atlanta rapper Dolla during a shooting at an upscale Los Angeles mall.

Jurors on Friday rejected prosecutors’ contentions that the killing of Dolla, whose real name was Roderick Anthony Burton II (left), was a callous act of apparent revenge.

Burton and his accused shooter, Aubrey Louis Berry, had been involved in a fight at an Atlanta club less than two weeks before the shooting last May.

Berry (right) hugged his attorney after the verdict was read while Burton’s family sobbed.

Berry’s attorney had contended the shooting was an act of self-defense, emphasizing that Burton glorified a violent gangster lifestyle in his rap lyrics and online videos.

The rapper was a protege of hip-hop artist Akon. 

According to an LA Times story available on the AP wire, gangster rap has long drawn fire for its violence-laced lyrics. Critics have blamed the genre for inciting real crime. Some successful rappers have been accused of violent crimes, and in other cases, suspects have told authorities that gangster rap songs provoked them to violence.

But the murder trial of Berry, a 24-year-old events promoter from Atlanta, is unusual in the way it has focused attention on the artistic work of someone who was the victim of violence.

Read the full story by clicking the link below.

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