According to Murray Richman, DMX's attorney, it was merely a matter of accepting responsibility and taking the punishment for the crime. And on Tuesday afternoon (October 25), inside the Queens Criminal Court building in New York, that's just what the rapper did.
Under the terms of a plea deal orchestrated by Richman and Queens District Attorney Richard Brown, DMX (real name: Earl Simmons) pleaded guilty to violating the terms of his conditional release.
The charge stems from a June 2004 incident at New York's John F. Kennedy International Airport in which X allegedly claimed to be a federal agent and attempted to steal a car (see "DMX Faces Drug, Weapons Charges After Airport Incident"). He pleaded guilty to a reckless-endangerment charge on December 8 and was sentenced to a conditional discharge.
The terms of the discharge required that DMX stay out of trouble with the law, but two separate driving-related incidents landed him in court earlier this month, during which he made a controversial appearance (see "DMX Did Not Dance Out Of Court, His Lawyer Says"). The case was adjourned to permit both sides the time to hammer out Tuesday's plea deal.
DMX will return to court on November 17, where he'll learn his fate — which, according to Richman, will be a 60-day sentence to be served at New York's Rikers Island. Richman said his client will likely spend just 40 days behind bars, under the conditions of the plea agreement. DMX is not facing probation or fines.
"Under the circumstances, this was the best we could possibly hope for," Richman said. X had been facing a year in prison, if the case was tried and ended with a conviction. "There was no question [of guilt in this case], so it would be disingenuous to suggest that we could have avoided this altogether. After those 40 days, everything will be over for him."
For Richman, today's plea was the sole option available for his client, but "any time a client goes to jail, I'm not pleased." But DMX, for his part, was "in good spirits.
"He took it. It's a somber situation. He felt the reality of it and he's moving on," said the attorney. "The man's a class act. He did what he had to do."