Friday, May 23, 2008

New York: Visionary "Slick Rick" Pardoned

Gov. David A. Paterson (who is legally blind) has announced that he has pardoned Ricky Walters, (aka "Slick Rick," "MC Ricky D" and "Rick the Ruler") who was convicted of attempted murder in 1991 and also happens to wear a patch over one eye blinded as a result of a childhood injury. Walters was released from prison in 1997, but faces deportation. The New York Times describes Walters as "a 43-year-old hip-hop pioneer." The Governor's statement read, part:

Mr. Walters has fully served the sentence imposed upon him for his convictions, had an exemplary disciplinary record while in prison and on parole, and has been living without incident in the community for more than 10 years. In that time, he has volunteered at youth outreach programs to counsel youth against violence, and has become a symbol of rehabilitation for many young people ...

In 1991, Mr. Walters pleaded guilty in Bronx County Supreme Court to two counts of attempted murder and eight weapons offenses arising from an incident in which Walters shot his cousin and an innocent bystander, both of whom survived the shooting. Walters’ cousin had made previous threats against Walters, and Walters believed his cousin had arranged at least one previous attempt on his life. Mr. Walters, who was 25 years old at the time of the incident, was sentenced to a term of 3⅓ to 10 years in prison ...

... He is presently employed as a landlord and rap musician. Mr. Walters has a wife and two children, all of whom are American citizens.

International musicologists will recall the lyrics of Slick's Beethovenesque Behind Bars, (not to be confused with the more Wagnerian Treat Em Like a Prostitute) in which Slick says, "In the slammer kid but I'm innocent." Symbol of rehabilitation indeed! See story here and here.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Wow! What a Governor. I have tried for eight years to get a pardon from Governor Easley (North Carolina). My crime possession of 2 Ounces of Marijuana!

- Still a felon since the 80's

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