Busta Rhymes Gets Five Years Probation On Gun Charge

Sonicnet Music News

Rapper Busta Rhymes received five years probation on Friday on a gun possession charge for carrying an unregistered, .45-caliber pistol in his car, according to Reuters.

Busta Rhymes (born Trevor Smith, Jr.) pleaded guilty in May 1999 to the charge, stemming from an incident in which police found a loaded pistol in his 1995 Mercedes-Benz, the news service said. Busta Rhymes entered the plea before Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Herbert Adlerberg. The rapper would have faced up to seven years in prison if he had been convicted in a trial.

Busta Rhymes originally faced sentencing in September 1999, but Adlerberg delayed it because the rapper was under investigation for violating a protective order to stay away from his former girlfriend, Joanne Wood, the mother of his 7-year-old son, T'ziah, Reuters said. Wood accused Busta Rhymes of not paying child support, which the rapper denied, and he was ordered to report to Adlerberg's court

every two months until the family issue was resolved.

No information was available at press time on the resolution of the child-support issue and alleged protective-order violation. The rapper's label, Elektra, had no comment.

Busta Rhymes, on a nine-date tour, will perform October 18 in Orlando, Florida. The tour concludes October 28 in Greensboro, North Carolina.

He also is working on two movie projects, according to the label. He has a role in "Finding Forrester," directed by Gus Van Zant and starring Sean Connery; the film is due December 25. He's also set to play the Cowardly Lion in "The O.Z.," a Fox-TV remake of "The Wizard of Oz," which has no release date yet.