Rapper sues city of San Diego over gang conspiracy lawJanuary 12, 2017 12:11am

SAN DIEGO (AP) — A hip-hop musician and a community organizer have sued the city of San Diego for federal civil rights violations over being jailed on gang-related charges based on their rap lyrics and social media postings.

The lawsuit, filed late Tuesday in San Diego, says musician Brandon "Tiny Doo" Duncan and activist Aaron Harvey were jailed for seven months after their arrests in June 2014 under a California gang conspiracy law that critics say amounts to guilt by association. A judge dismissed charges two months after they were released.

The rarely used state law passed in 2000 says active gang members with knowledge of a gang's criminal activities can be prosecuted for crimes others commit if they willfully benefited from, promoted or assisted in some way.

Prosecutors said the lyrics and social media postings promoted gang violence, created fear among rivals of San Diego's Lincoln Park Blood gang and added legitimacy to the gang during a shooting spree in 2013.

The lawsuit alleges that police violated constitutional rights to free speech and against unreasonable search and seizure.

Gerry Braun, a spokesman for the San Diego city attorney's office, said the city had not been served with the lawsuit when asked to comment on it. The complaint also names police Detectives Rudy Castro and Scott Henderson as defendants for their handling of the investigation.

Duncan has had difficulty sleeping since the episode, is uncomfortable in crowds and around police officers and still owes money to his criminal defense attorney, the lawsuit said.

"Seven months of his life were taken and converted into incarceration with a potential life sentence for doing nothing illegal," the lawsuit said.

Harvey has had nightmares since his arrest and becomes uncomfortable in crowds, the lawsuit said.

Mark Zebrowski, an attorney for the two men, said, "Constitutionally protected speech and association and other expressive conduct are not illegal."

More Stories Like This

Graceland Black Lives Matter protest prompts lawsuitFive people have filed a federal civil rights lawsuit against the city of Memphis and Elvis Presley's Graceland, saying they were discriminated against at a Black Lives Matter protest during the annual vigil commemorating the singer's death
The Latest: Graceland says it has history of 'inclusion'The owners of Elvis Presley's Graceland say the tourist attraction has a "world-wide reputation for inclusion" in response to a lawsuit filed by five people who claim they faced discrimination
Judge revokes bail for hip-hop podcast host in murder caseA judge has revoked bail for a hip-hop podcast host arrested in connection with a New York City concert venue shooting that left a rapper's bodyguard dead
FILE - In this undated file photo provided by the U.S. Army, Pfc. Chelsea Manning poses for a photo wearing a wig and lipstick. On Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2017, President Barack Obama commuted the sentence of Chelsea Manning, who leaked Army documents and is serving 35 years. (U.S. Army via AP, File)
More clemency coming after Obama shortens Manning's sentence
Judge rejects bid by Aaron Hernandez to suppress cellphoneA judge has denied a request from former NFL star Aaron Hernandez to suppress the contents of his cellphone at his upcoming double murder trial
Judge not inclined to delay Aaron Hernandez murder trialA judge presiding over the double murder case against former New England Patriots star Aaron Hernandez says he's not inclined to delay the trial, scheduled to begin next month
AdChoices

Related Searches

Related Searches

AdChoices