Plies Hit With Lawsuit for 2006 Shooting
A 2008 civil lawsuit filed against Florida rapper, Plies, is gaining some national attention as the plaintiffs made a move this Wednesday (March 3) to include the rapper’s brother and his label, Big Gates Records in the suit.
The lawsuit stems from a 2006 dispute in a Gainesville, Florida nightclub which erupted into gunfire leaving five clubgoers with gunshots wounds. The defendants claim that the shooting came from Plies and his entourage as they were warring with another rapper in the nightclub. Plies originally pleased no contest to illegal possession of a concealed weapon, and walked away free while his brother Ronell Levatte served three years in prison on the same charge. But the plaintiffs made the recent decision to amend the lawsuit based on claims that Plies has made references to the shooting in his lyrics to promote his image as gangsta rapper.
According to the Miami Herald, Defense lawyer Chad Roberts explained that it was necessary to bring the record label into the dispute in order to find justice. “The irony is that when you criminally prosecute (gangsta rappers) their stock goes up,” Roberts said. “It’s hard to punish them. The only way to punish is them is to hold the record company accountable.”
Plies’ lawyer Robert Rush immediately countered the statement, accusing the plaintiffs of amending the suit in an effort to draw publicity to the case. “This is defamation of character and it is all false. If his music wasn’t any good, he wouldn’t have gotten anywhere,” Rush said. “This happened four years ago, his record sales are not doing great because of this.”