Anti Busta Backlash Grows, Grand Jury Could Force Testimony
Thus far, the probe into the death of Israel Ramirez, who was gunned down at Brooklyn's Kiss the Cactus Production studio on February 5, has been stalled by the lack of witness cooperation, including Busta.
Tony Yayo, whose argument with producer Swizz Beatz is believed to have sparked the shooting, has also remained silent. Word is Yayo left the scene with the shooter. He has since retained an attorney and is tight-lipped on the shooting.
"Nobody has come forward," New York Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly told New York's Daily News. "No one has volunteered any information, even though there were possibly 50 people at the scene of this homicide."
Police have already contacted Busta's legal team in hopes of getting information about the incident. Authorities believe the rapper was standing feet away from Ramirez when he was fatally shot. Yet, the Long Island, NY native has refused to talk.
According to Kelly, authorities are now slated to sit down with Brooklyn prosecutors this week to raise the possibility of selecting an investigative grand jury. The grand jury could force Busta and other witnesses to share what they know or face prison time. Ramirez's family and friends are begging Busta to cooperate with authorities.
Meanwhile, more and more hip-hoppers and activists are speaking out against Busta's lack of cooperation. Grassroots organization the James E. Davis Stop the Violence Foundation is the latest group calling on Busta to talk.
"It's time to put the career aside and worry about who killed Mr. Ramirez," the foundation's Geoffrey Davis told the Daily News.
Davis said the organization will boycott Busta's music and bash him on NY's Hot 97 radio station next Sunday.
"We encourage Busta Rhymes to come forward," added Rev. Kev Bogan, a member of the anti-violence group. "This code of silence has to be broken."