Offset was arrested during a traffic stop in Atlanta last year, but the court took its time charging him. Now, TMZ reports that those charges could be serious enough to jeopardize the rapper’s freedom.
Besides being charged for the misdemeanor offenses of marijuana possession and a traffic violation, Offset now faces felony firearm possession by a convicted felon, the penalty for which is a prison term of one to five years. Although Offset’s lawyer, Drew Findling, was able to get a fourth charge dropped — felony possession of a weapon during a crime — he continues to contend that the initial traffic stop was illegal in the first place, especially considering that the reasoning for the stop changed between the initial report and the current story.
Originally, the arresting officers cited his tinted windows as the reason for their stop, but eventually noted that Offset or his driver made an illegal lane change. They gave no reason for the search, which has Offset’s lawyer’s hackles raised. He previously noted that he felt the police made the arrest because of less-than-forthright reasons, saying:
“It’s a common theme. We’re talking about a young, African American man driving a shiny, beautiful luxury car and clad in designer clothes and watches and jewelry. Unfortunately, people in his genre become a target for law enforcement who think that lifestyle is connected to some illegal activity … and that is a sad statement.”
Findling also insists that Offset did not possess a firearm at the time of the arrest. Offset entered a “not guilty” plea last month and is due back in court in May.