Violence Plagues Second Vibe Awards
The second annual Vibe Awards were halted last night (Nov. 15) when a fracas erupted during the presentation of the Legend Award to Dr. Dre.The second annual Vibe Awards were halted last night (Nov. 15) when a fracas erupted during the presentation of the Legend Award to Dr. Dre. Nearly half of the awards had been handed out at Barker Hangar in Santa Monica, Calif., when Snoop Dogg and legendary producer Quincy Jones began paying tribute to the rap producer. Several guests promptly exchanged punches and threw chairs.
From the press room monitors, a host of reporters watched as law enforcement officials ringed the stage, hustled Jones off and worked to break up the fighting. The monitors went dark for approximately 15 minutes before taping resumed, with Snoop Dogg and Jones back onstage for their introduction and Dre accepting his award without further incident.
According to sources inside the hangar, later corroborated by news reports, the melee was sparked when a guest punched Dr. Dre in the face. It's unclear what ignited the fight.
"We are deeply saddened by the incident that occurred last night," Vibe president Kenard Gibbs said in a statement. "It is unfortunate that an event so many people worked very hard to create has been tainted by the actions of a few individuals. The Vibe Awards and Vibe magazine represent the best of urban culture and they will continue to do so. It is a testament to the true vision of the Vibe Awards that the magnificent talent and staff continued on to create a fantastic show."
According to reports, an audience member was stabbed but is recovering. No one had been arrested and the assailant is still at large.
The remainder of the ceremony went off without a hitch, although several artists who had been in attendance left early, including Alicia Keys. On hand earlier to accept her award for best R&B song (for "If I Ain't Got You"), she was not in attendance when she was named artist of the year. Keys was also scheduled to perform during the latter half of the ceremony.
Keys tied with Terror Squad as the evening's top winners. The rap group took home statuettes for hottest hook and club banger of the year, both for the 2004 summer anthem "Lean Back."
The Vibe Awards air scheduled to air tonight on UPN.