U.S. district judge Charles Pannell, Jr has sentenced T.I. (Clifford Harris) to 11 months in prison for violating the conditions of his parole.
T.I. entered Atlanta court today to answer charges stemming from his Los Angeles arrest on September 1 for possessing ecstasy, and later testing positive for opiates. At the time, T.I. was on probation for a 2009 federal weapons conviction, for which he served seven months in prison from late May-December 2009. In March, he was released for a halfway house.
T.I. was flanked by a team of six attorneys, who pushed for the rapper to receive a six month sentence for his infractions. The legal team did not mention their client’s participation in a suicide prevention rescue earlier this week as support for their argument.
According to prosecutors, T.I. and his wife Tameka “Tiny” Cottle’s September 1 arrest not only annulled his special plea agreement, but made a mockery of his court-imposed 1000 hours of community service speaking out to children across the nation. T.I.’s community outreach efforts was the subject of an MTV special titled T.I.’s Road to Redemption.
“While T.I. was telling kids to obey the law, he was breaking the law,” said U.S. attorney Sally Yates, who recommend the Grand Hustle CEO go back to prison for two years. In addition to the community service issue, Yates also accused the rapper of lying to his probation officer and submitting false urine samples.
Throughout the day, fellow Atlanta emcees such as Killer Mike and Pastor Troy remained in the courthouse to show their support.
At press time, a date has not been given for T.I. to begin his sentence. His latest album, King Uncaged, has been delayed indefinitely.