Rapper, Tiny Doo, Facing Life in Jail for Releasing Gang-Related Album
2014 ended with the nation in torment over racial discord erupting from the tension between citizens and law enforcement as the long established order of unfairly slaying men of color based on their racial profile was being challenged by protesters across the country.
The struggle to find a solution wages on and in the meantime, black men are still being persecuted based on specifications that are grossly biased.
San Diego reared rapper, Tiny Doo, whose birth name is Brandon Duncan, is currently facing the possibility of a life sentence based on the violent content of his latest album – No Safety.
Duncan is being condemned for having affiliations with gang members even though he has never been directly involved in gang-related activity. Late last year, Duncan was jailed for supposedly using his musical career as an outlet to profit from the riches being exploited from the streets. In other words, the fact that he is a rapper who pulls his material from what is considered to be a typical life of a gangster – automatically makes him one in the eyes of the law.
Duncan is still in prison because he is unable to come up with $500,000 – the amount that would be needed to bail him out. But his troubles have only just begun because his rap sheet is heavily correlated with the damning actions of one of the most lethal gangs in the state of California – the Lincoln Park Bloods, who allegedly initiated a bloody period in 2013 with a slew of shooting episodes.
Despite the fact that prosecutors acknowledge that Duncan wasn’t directly involved or even privy to the incidents – under a California law that was validated back in 2000, he can be accused of profiting from the gang’s popularity based on the content of his album that seemingly glorifies their exploits.
Sounds preposterous but the prosecutors have managed to find a way to legally hold Duncan accountable for something that he is emphatically denying and for all intent and purposes can’t be adequately proven
His persona as a rapper who utilizes images like a “loaded revolver” and whose lyrics seemingly echo the activities of a gang he is being linked with have made it easy for prosecutors to keep him behind bars indefinitely.
Duncan has spoken to media outlets like CNN and Vice.com to defend his reputation and denounce the charges he is facing. In an interview with CNN, he gave an explanation about why he is being wrongly accused, “I go to work every day”. “How am I benefitting from what someone else is doing? I haven’t sold a million records or anything”. And to Vice.com – the rapper emphasized what should already be abundantly clear regarding his music, “It’s entertainment. It’s not real”.
Prosecutors are not convinced that Duncan is simply pulling from vivid imagination and as a result he will stand trial with 14 other suspects who are also being accused of elevating their street cred based on the shootings.
Brian Watkins, the attorney representing Duncan confirmed that the men are not facing charges because of participation but rather for highlighting and celebrating the livelihood of gangsters in ways that are beneficial to them. “They’re going after the person who says the word ‘gun’, rather than the person who actually used the gun”.
It doesn’t seem like a fair deal but the San Diego District Attorney’s office believes the men deserve to face charges based on the accumulated evidence against them which proves beyond a doubt that they have each been involved in gang activity.
The trial date has been set for April 20 – but in the meantime, Duncan continues to plead his case in an effort to get his story the exposure it needs to garner the amount of support that could potentially change the hands of fate.