When Lyrics Are Used Against Rappers in Court

Rappers Tekashi 6ix9ine, Snoop Dogg, and Boosie all referenced crimes in their lyrics — then lawyers used it against them in court. Should this be allowed?

Some high-profile legal cases have seen rappers have their lyrics used against them

Snoop Dogg was charged with first degree murder after the 1993 of a rival gang member by his bodyguard. During the trial in 1996, prosecutors referred to his song “Murder Was the Case,” which depicts the rapper being convicted of homicide. Snoop was eventually cleared of all charges, as seen from an MTV News interview taken from 1996.

In 2017, 16-year-old Texas rapper Tay-K was under house arrest and facing capital murder charges following his alleged involvement in a home invasion robbery that left 1 person dead. He cut his ankle monitor and went on the run for 3 months — during which time he released “The Race,” which bragged about his time on the run. The track was read as evidence of his fugitive lifestyle in court, and Tay-K was sentenced to 55 years for the 2016 robbery.

In 2012, Baton Rouge rapper Boosie was put on trial for allegedly paying a teen hitman to commit a murder. The evidence? Lyrics to Boosie’s songs “187” and “Bodybag,” which were recorded on the same day as the killing. Boosie was later found innocent, and legal experts were critical of the use of his lyrics tin court.

In 2019, Brooklyn rapper Tekashi 6ix9ine took the stand as a key witness in a trial to testify against members of his alleged gang, the Nine Trey Gangsta Bloods. During the trial, his music videos and lyrics in the songs “Gummo” and “Kooda” were used to identify key gang members and gang locations used by Nine Trey. For testifying against his former affiliates, Tekashi will avoid 47 years in prison on charges of racketeering drug distribution weapon possession murder conspiracy.

It seems like such a cruel irony that a rapper’s imagination, which offers so many listeners a metaphorical and literal escape, is the same thing that, in the end, could become the miscomprehended evidence that snatches back that freedom.


10/21/2019 10:19 AMupdated: 10/22/2019 3:29 PM
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  • Drr D.
    4 hours

  • Tim H.
    9 hours


  • Kai K.
    10 hours

    Brain damage

  • Shokry S.
    11 hours

    Hilarious takashi 🤣🤣

  • Rodolfo M.
    14 hours


  • Eamon Y.
    14 hours

    I'm glad that 6ix9ine is back , omfg

  • Cara M.
    18 hours

    Didn't know that rainbow headed youtt dodged a whole 47 yrs with all that snitching

  • Valentinavicius D.
    19 hours


  • Michael P.
    a day

    What is that

  • Michael R.
    a day

    Deuche Rat !

  • Mohamed B.
    a day

    Au moins c est dit

  • Phil E.
    a day

    Takeshi 69 what a waste of a human that really is.

  • Devaughn M.
    a day

    Rat rip 🐀

  • JessicaandDavid H.
    a day

    How is rainbow brite still alive after he snitched? He must have really good body guards. 🤔

  • John D.
    a day

    69 is the lucky one big time!

  • Philip W.
    a day

    What about should fear them ya div

  • Shahaira U.
    2 days

    i think this is me i fear god and the goverment 🤣

  • Ibrahima B.
    2 days

    Are you saying the FBI are equal to god? God gives you life and to him you will return. Not to the FBI.FBI are humans just like you.

  • Rodriguez F.
    2 days

    Not man in the absolutely...

  • Yarap P.
    2 days

    Haha hell yeah👏