Police Bemoan Rhymes' Silence In Shooting
New York Police Commissioner Ray Kelly berated Busta Rhymes yesterday (Feb. 15), accusing the rapper of withholding information about the slaying of his bodyguard at a recent video shoot.New York Police Commissioner Ray Kelly berated Busta Rhymes yesterday (Feb. 15), accusing the rapper of withholding information about the slaying of his bodyguard at a recent video shoot.
Kelly complained that the silence of several potential witnesses has stymied the investigation of the Brooklyn killing last week of Israel Ramirez. He saved his harshest remarks for Rhymes.
Ramirez "worked for him," Kelly said. "I'd think he'd be knocking on the door. ... If your employee's murdered in front of you, you think you might want to talk to the police."
If the witnesses keep stonewalling, they could be forced to answer questions before a grand jury, Kelly said. "I find it quite disturbing," the commissioner said. "This individual was shot in front of a lot of people." The rapper's publicist declined to comment.
Rhymes attended a wake last week at a Manhattan funeral home for the 29-year-old Ramirez, who grew up in Harlem and left behind a wife and three young children
The rapper has not spoken publicly about the fatal shooting. But in a written statement, he said Ramirez "was not only security for me, but he was a friend, one of the rare friends that you come across that you can trust with your life."
Ramirez was gunned down Feb. 5 outside a star-studded gathering at a warehouse where a music video was being taped to accompany a remix of Rhymes' single, "Touch It." Along with Rhymes, Missy Elliot, Mary J. Blige, DMX and G-Unit members, including Lloyd Banks and Tony Yayo, were among those in attendance.
Police say the shooting may have stemmed from an argument between Yayo and a producer that began inside and spilled onto the street. They believe Ramirez, who was unarmed, was a bystander who may have intervened only to protect Rhymes.
Investigators were seeking a court order to obtain any video recorded inside the warehouse, believing it might help identify a suspect.
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