A Rapper Might Face Prison Because of His Song

This case goes directly against the First Amendment.

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If you generally pick up a rap song, you know there are going to be some hard and heavy lyrics about gangs, guns and violence – all common traits in the world of rap. But one prosecutor from the land of Hollywood says that one rapper’s lyrics are beyond the limits of creativity, accusing the rapper of conspiring and keeping secret about a street gang activity that is present in his lyrics.

Brandon Duncan, or as many of his fans know him by his stage name, Tiny Doo, is an American hip-hop/rap artist whose song was deemed too violent for the public. He has already spent some time in prison, and if charged, can face more than twenty years.

Image Source: BuzzFeed – Tiny Doo also known as Brandon Duncan (right) posing for the image.

Under California’s penal code 182.5, it is a crime for anyone to take part in any type of criminal activity with any type of gang, or have knowledge of any such gang or criminal activity taking place and conspiring to be silent.

The last part of the song that says, “Benefiting from criminal activity,” is what led prosecutors to go after Brandon Duncan. The rapper faces more than five counts of gang conspiracy because the people suing him say that he, along with other gang members, increased their respect in the world of gangs by opening fire in the city of San Diego. To support their argument, the prosecutors picked lyrics from his album No Safety, that says, “ain’t no safety on this pistol I am holding.” They took this as a supportive argument, relating it directly to the gang’s activities.

Image Source: Noisey – Rapper Tiny Doo (middle) posing for a picture.

According to the news, no one ever came forward with the claim that Brandon Duncan ever actually even pulled a trigger – along with the fact that he has no criminal record, albeit this accusation.

Tiny Doo, in an interview, said that he was simply telling the world about how the real street life is in the form of lyrical imagery. He further went on saying that the studio is his canvas and that his songs are simply a painting done by his words – and is not a message to go out and kill someone.

He has denied any type of physical or verbal involvement with any gangs, but he did express the fact that because of this case, he has to be very careful with his lyrics now. He said that he wanted to rap, but the people are making conditions difficult for him to rap openly.

Imag Source: Noisey – Tiny Doo’s album cover No Safety.

However, the prosecutors say that his songs are not the only proof they have of his criminal activities. They also stated that they have his social media account postings that provide information about his involvement with the gang in question.

While many condemn his actions, Tiny Doo says that this issue of limited speech is going directly against the First Amendment.

Source: The Guardian, The Washington Times, NBC San Diego, BuzzFeed, Noisey


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2 COMMENTS

  1. Well they better charge JayZ second and 50cent third.
    THey both talk about selling crack and shootings regularly, and they are billionaires each.
    So who did this tiny doo piss off that has powerful friends. cause its not about benefitting from crime.
    In Cali knowing about a crime and staying silent is criminal act, well just arrest everyone then.
    Im sure everyone has seen someone J Walking, and not reported it.

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