Local News



Da Brat Avoids Jail Time In Lawsuit Over Bottle-Smashing Incident

Da Brat still faces significant debt in connection to an assault case from over a decade ago. But according to a new report, the rapper will avoid going to jail over it. Shayla Stevens accused Da Brat of smashing a bottle in the face of the former cheerleader at a club in 2007. The “Dish Nation” host owes $6.4 million in the case, but a judge recently ruled that Da Brat is protected from having to pay that up while she sorts through her bankruptcy filing, according to documents

claimed to be obtained by The Blast Thursday, Oct. 18. Stevens and her attorneys claimed the rapper should be placed in contempt of court by a Georgia state court for not paying what the rapper owes the former Atlanta Falcons cheerleader and for failing to comply with a discovery order. However, Da Brat claimed if she were to serve jail time, she wouldn’t be able to pay off not only what she owes Stevens but the other $1.3 million she owes to the IRS, her record label, and credit card company, among others.

Additionally, the performer said she believed a bankruptcy filing meant she’d have protection from her present debts and ongoing collection attempts. U.S. Bankruptcy Court Judge James Sacca in Atlanta has agreed with Da Brat’s argument and signed off on her claim. In August, news emerged that the “Funkdafied” performer owes over $7.7 million to various entities, which caused her to file for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection.

While the biggest source of debt comes from Stevens’ case against her, Da Brat also owes her So So Def record label’s parent company, Sony Music Entertainment, $1,255,128. Plus the MC owes $12,000 to Ally Bank and an undisclosed amount of back taxes to the IRS.

Morehouse Student Shot, Carjacked Adds to Growing List of Violent Incidents In Atlanta University Center

A 30-year-old student was shot multiple times after stopping at a Shell gas station in southwest Atlanta. Morehouse college student Geoffrey Willis is recovering at Grady Memorial Hospital after suffering from gunshot wounds to his legs and chest on Sunday afternoon. The Atlanta Police Department is on the hunt for three suspects who fled the scene after trying to steal the victim’s vehicle. “It’s just really not safe for our children out here,” a frequent customer at the Atlanta gas station told WSB-TV.

Willis stopped at a Shell gas station that’s less than a half-mile from Morehouse campus. He reportedly was coming from a luncheon with his Omega Psi Phi fraternity brothers when he parked at a gas pump and went inside the convenience store. That was when one of the suspects attempted to steal his vehicle. The student emerged from Shell and confronted the suspect, who jumped in a getaway car. A passenger in the escape vehicle then shot Willis before the three suspects took off.

Authorities were called to the gas station just a little before 3:30 p.m. Atlanta police said described the three suspects as juveniles who may have been driving a stolen Black Mercedes. The victim’s mother will be flying in from Virginia to be by her son’s side in the hospital. Willis is in stable condition.

The shooting of the Morehouse student comes after three other carjackings near the Atlanta University Center that happened in late September and early October. Atlanta police say the shootings were not related.

50 Cent Clowns Ashanti Over Concert Being Cancelled for Low Ticket Sales: 'Do Basement Parties'

The R&B singer was scheduled to play at Stony Brook University later this month but after only 24 tickets were sold, the school pulled the plug. Ashanti was a replacement for Teyana Taylor who dropped out at the last second. “Ashanti show canceled after only 24 tickets sold,” wrote 50. “Wait a minute,

l thought l told everybody not to f–k with this fool. l want the names and socials of everybody who bought a ticket.” Then in a separate post he wrote “Do basement parties. Then it can still feel like it’s lit. I don’t know what to say.” At this point, 50 has been beefing with Murder Inc.’s Ja Rule and Irv Gotti for over 15 years and his words to Ashanti, who’s also down with the crew, is just his latest shot.

Ashanti hasn’t responded yet, and she hasn’t addressed the cancelled event either. She did, however, post footage of her concert in Portland, which had a huge crowd— maybe to show that people still want to see her. As for Stony Brook, they haven’t said whether poor promotion had anything to do with the low ticket sales, or

if there was truly a lack of interest among students. “As an organization we do our best to host programs for students while providing diversity and inclusion, however, we have struggled to execute certain aspects,” they said in a statement.

Houston Father Confronts Son's Bully with Compassion, Not Anger, After Discovering His Family Is Homeless

A father in Houston, Texas, is being applauded for choosing kindness instead of anger when confronting the boy who’d been bullying his son at school. Their heartening story has been shared thousands of times, and now the father says the two boys are closer than ever. Last week, Aubrey Fontenot uploaded a Twitter video of himself taking the former bully, whose name is Tamarion, for a ride in an effort to get to the bottom of what was going on between that child and Fontenot’s son, Jordon.

Fontenot, a local tattoo artist, said he simply wanted to know why his son was being picked on. That’s when he got an answer he didn’t expect. It turns out Tamarion was himself being teased by other kids for wearing dirty clothes. “I asked ‘Who? You’re big, who is picking on you?’ He [Tamarion] said ‘All the other kids, they make fun of me,’” Fontenot told KHOU, recalling their conversation. A phone call to the boy’s mother revealed Tamarion’s family had fallen on hard times and was experiencing homelessness.

Fontenot said he knew he had to do something and later treated Tamarion to a shopping trip, buying him new clothes and shoes. ‘We have no clue what these children are going thru these days because a lot of us just don’t care,” Fontenot wrote in an Oct. 17 Facebook post. “And this isn’t a uncommon story for a lot of people .. so I spent a lot of my day yesterday by shopping and teaching this young man about self respect. Integrity. Morals. Confidence. And other things that consist of going from a troubled youth to a great man.” “We all come from different backgrounds but we all share the same goal of success,”

he added. A once timid Tamarion walked out of the store with confidence, and the two shared plenty of laughs, even singing a song on the way home, as seen in Fontenot’s heartwarming video. The life lesson didn’t end there. The doting father posted a video the following day of Tamarion and Jordan sitting face to face, albeit awkwardly, to hash out their issues. The boys didn’t say much to one another at first. “Speak your mind, son,” the tattoo artist says in the video.

“This is a meeting. We’re having a meeting.” Once the camera was off, Fontenot said the kids talked things over and were fast friends in no time, even playing video games together. The father said even he learned something from watching the two. “It taught me something. I was angry at first, then I said let me try something different,” Fontenot told KHOU. Fontenot has since launched a GoFundMe campaign to benefit Tamarion and his family, who’ve been staying at a hotel. So far, the page has raised over $24,000 in donations, more than exceeding its original goal of $7,000.

Officer Kills Man Accused of Killing Georgia Officer

A police officer on Monday shot and killed an 18-year-old man accused of fatally shooting another officer near a school in the Atlanta area over the weekend, police said. Tafahree Maynard was one of two men

charged in the fatal shooting Saturday of Gwinnett County police Officer Antwan Toney. Police believe Maynard shot Toney, and had launched an area manhunt as he faced charges of aggravated assault and felony murder.

Police got a credible tip about Maynard’s whereabouts around 3 a.m. Monday, Gwinnett County police Chief Butch Ayers told reporters. Dozens of police officers went door-to-door in a search for him, knocking on doors and interviewing people. Two officers searching a shed behind a house encountered Maynard, who failed to

comply with verbal commands, Ayers said. Maynard initially had his hand behind his back and when he showed his hand, he was holding an “edged weapon” in his hand, the chief said. One officer fired a stun gun at Maynard and the other fatally shot him from about 5 or 6 feet (1.5 meters or 1.8 meters) away, Ayers said.

“I would like to say that the danger to the community is over,” Ayers said at a news conference, adding that police would continue to investigate any potential charges against people who may have provided assistance to Maynard “during his attempt to escape justice.” Toney was responding to a call around 2:30 p.m. Saturday about a suspicious vehicle near Shiloh Middle School in the Snellville area, about 25 miles (40 kilometers) northeast of Atlanta. When the officers approached, someone in the vehicle opened fire and Toney was hit, police said. Then the vehicle sped off.

Toney died at a hospital from his wounds, police said. The 30-year-old from Southern California had been with the Gwinnett County Police Department for nearly three years, serving in his first police job. “The people that worked with Officer Toney on a daily basis recalled a very jovial person who was dedicated to his job and dedicated to his community,” Ayers said. A second suspect, 19-year-old Isaiah Pretlow, was charged with aggravated assault for allegedly pointing a gun at an officer during the pursuit after

Toney’s fatal shooting, police had said earlier. According to police, Pretlow drove the vehicle away after the shooting, crashed a short distance away and fled along with other occupants. An officer searching the area later encountered Pretlow around 3 p.m. Pretlow pointed a gun at the officer, who fired shots, according to police. Pretlow was not hit and fled into some woods. He was subsequently taken into custody around 11:30 p.m. Saturday by U.S. Marshals.

New York Woman Dies After Being Found Unconscious In Apartment She Moved Into a Month Ago

A 26-year-old woman of Staten Island was found passed out inside of her apartment on Thursday morning. Authorities said Leayana Lewis died at Richmond University Medical Center after her roommate discovered her unconscious on the bedroom floor around 8 a.m. “My Heart, my rock, my blood,

my oldest sister was only 26 years old & now she’s gone,” Yassin Teyana wrote on Facebook, a woman who appears to be the victim’s sister. “I’m in disbelief idk what to do right now. I love you so much Leayana Lewis you were my everything and more I just wish I had one more day with you.” Police officials said Leayana suffered from a head injury after she was discovered unresponsive. A medical examiner will determine the cause of death after conducting an autopsy.

Teyana told the Daily News that the family is in the dark and doesn’t “know anything, and we haven’t heard from police or doctors.” “My heart is broke, my mind is all over Lea we just wanna know how and why?” she added. A neighbor who lived in Staten Island’s “Todt Hill Houses” complex said Lewis was new to

the neighborhood and moved into the area a month ago. He told the news outlet he’d never seen Lewis bring anyone home. “Just ‘Hi, bye’ in the elevator,” he said. “She was always quiet.”