Busta Rhymes Pleads Guilty; Avoids Jailtime
January 23, 2008 at 12:18 PM (PT)
GRAMMY-nominated rapper BUSTA RHYMES pleaded guilty TODAY (1/23) to assault, two driving infractions and weapons possession, avoiding a trial and the yearlong prison sentence recommended by prosecutors. RHYMES, 35, whose real name is TREVOR SMITH, had initially pleaded innocent to all the charges and was scheduled to go on trial on TODAY.
But Judge LARRY STEVENS disagreed with prosecutors that RYMESs deserved time behind bars. Instead, he sentenced him to three years' probation and 10 days of community service for beating a fan who reportedly spat on his car in AUGUST 2006, and then assaulting his driver, LARRY HACKETT, that DECEMBER.
RHYMES was also fined $1,250 for driving with a suspended license in 2006 and driving while intoxicated in 2007.
"I just want to say that I'm very grateful to the judge, I'm very grateful to the system. I believe in the system. It hasn't failed me personally yet," RHYMES said outside the courtroom. "I'm just glad that all of this is finally behind me and I can go back to doing what I do best -- making great music and great films and being a people person.