NEW YORK An assault charge against rapper Capone of rap duo Capone-N-Noreaga was dropped Monday in Queens County Court due to a lack of evidence.
Judge Dorothy Chin-Brandt dismissed the second-degree assault charge on the grounds that there was insufficient evidence to sustain a prosecution, a spokesperson for the district attorney's office said. The motion to dismiss was raised by the district attorney after an investigation turned up a lack of evidence against Capone, according to the rapper's lawyer, Robert Kalina.
"The police were in a difficult situation and arrested the wrong man," Kalina said. "There was an altercation [at a club], and my client was swept out into the street. When he crossed the street and got into his car, it was rammed by another vehicle. When he got out [of the car], a police officer fired shots at Capone and his cousin, who was hit in the back of the head."
Capone (born Kiam Holley), his cousin Marion Jefferson and associate Mesiah Watson were arrested in September at Club Juan Pachanga in Queens after police responded to a call about a dispute involving a firearm (see "Capone Arrested After Being Fired Upon"). Capone and Jefferson were charged with second-degree assault, and Watson was charged with possession of marijuana. No one in Capone's camp was charged with possessing the gun, a .380-caliber pistol, according to the police report.
The report confirmed that Capone's black Mercedes-Benz was hit by a truck, though it said that the bullets fired by the responding officer didn't hit either suspect. When authorities caught up with Capone and Jefferson, they found him with a superficial neck wound, which "could have been the result of bullet fragmentation."
"We're glad that we were finally cleared and exonerated of all the charges placed upon us because we're black and we rap," Chris Lighty, CEO of Violator Management, said. "And we will continue to be law-abiding citizens.
"Now let's see how long it takes to get his [impounded] Mercedes back," Lighty added, only half-joking.