Top Ten Videos to watch

A Man Operating A Tv Camera
Maurice White
March2Justice
'News One Now' With Roland Martin Taping
Bill Cosby
Activists In Los Angeles Gather To Burn Likenesses Of The Confederate Flag
Flint Firebirds V Windsor Spitfires
CBC Message To America: Rep. Conyers Addresses The Damage Inflicted On Our Communities By Poverty, Mass Incarceration And Lack Of Economic Development
Iowa Caucus Ted Cruz
NewsOne Now NAACP Image Awards Preview
Student sitting at a desk in a classroom
Slavery Stock image
The 16th Annual Wall Street Project Gala Fundraising Reception
Ava DuVernay
Roland Martin Blasts Stacey Dash For Comments About BET, Black Networks
President Obama Delivers State Of The Union Address At U.S. Capitol
Ava DuVernay
2016 North American International Auto Show
Democratic National Committee Presidential Primary Debate
88th Oscars Nominations Announcement
Democratic debate
Dream Speech
GOP Presidential Candidates Debate In Charleston
US President Barack Obama speaks on the
24593149
2011 Winter TCA Tour - Day 5
LOS ANGELES, CA - FEBRUARY 18, 2015: Two wooden stand-in Oscar statuettes are ready to be taken on
Woman Holding Dollars - Isolated
President Barack Obama Delivers His State Of The Union Address
Leave a comment

street rappers nyc lawsuit

Eight street rappers who sell their CDs in Times Square have filed joint lawsuits against the city, claiming the NYPD violated their First Amendment rights, the New York Daily News reports.

SEE ALSO: Court Won’t Review Dr. Conrad Murray Case

“They don’t want us making money out here,” commented Bronx rapper Andre Johnson (pictured center), who claims the department has arrested him 30 times.

“We’re having fun out here,” he added. “We’re doing something we’re allowed to do. I guess they had their dreams that they didn’t fulfill. Now we have our dreams, and they want to shut us down.”

The artists say they follow rules the NYPD lays down, including standing next to their tables to sell their CDs. The NYPD claims, though, that they often shove CDs at passersby and even follow them down the street, with some vendors allegedly ribbing pedestrians. Consequently, the rappers often receive disorderly conduct and aggressive begging charges after being arrested.

Still, the MCs maintain the arrests have no basis.

“They never have a witness statement. They never put you in a photo array,” said Jackson. “I respect the law, but I don’t respect you trying to make your own law. You’re not a cop anymore. You’re a vigilante.”

Artists claim they sometimes plead guilty to violations to leave jail sooner, but Jackson decided to fight his charges in 2012, arguing that the officers never arrest other street performers.

“I want it to stop,” he said. “They never arrest the spray-paint guys. They never arrest the guys who draw pictures of people. That’s considered art? My music should be considered art too.”

The artists filed their suits in 2013, which are now being consolidated under one judge.

“It’s not cool how they treat us,” added rapper Naquan Miles (pictured far right). 

“They’re Black urban males — people are trained to be afraid of them,” said Reggie Williams, an Ohio native who recently purchased a CD from the artists with his daughter. “But they’re not going to do anything to you. They’re just trying to get heard. I think it’s great. This is what New York is all about.”

Former city lawyer Katie Smith is representing the men in court and is supporting their rights to distribute their music, “You don’t need to like their music or the way they distribute it to respect their constitutional rights,” she said.

The suits involve 17 officers.

SEE ALSO: The Surprising New Health Coach In Your Life

 

 

 

 

 

Also On News One: