*I’m telling you, if you’re about that life, you might want to look at the case of rapper Mac Phillips, who was convicted of the 2001 murder of a concertgoer and is serving 30 years in prison as a result. Not that the prosecutor had any evidence of a forensic nature against him. No past criminal activity he could put on the rapper. Nuh uh, he went straight for the jugular.
In this case, his music.
Now McKinley “Mac” Phipps has a lot of time on his hands. As a resident at the Elayn Hunt Correctional Center in St. Tammy Parish, Louisiana, he has plenty of opportunities to recall the words of his best-known song.
Murda, murda (murder, murder)
Kill, kill (kill, kill)
S**t’s real (s**t’s real)
On the battlefield (on the battlefield)
Watch Mac perform the song in the video directly below and SCROLL DOWN to watch his parents speak about reopening his case.
Mac was on the verge of stardom in the 90s, when he was a young hip-hop artist known as “Mac the Camouflage Assassin” signed to Master P’s No Limit Records, alongside Snoop Dogg and Mystikal. He was a member of the 504 Boyz, and their 2000 album, “Goodfellas,” went gold, reaching No. 2 on the Billboard 200.
But on Feb. 21, 2000, everything came to a halt at a show just outside New Orleans, when a concertgoer was shot, Phipps was charged with first-degree murder at the age of 22.
The prosecution had no forensic evidence. They didn’t even bother to perform ballistics on what could have been the murder weapon. Five of the prosecution’s witnesses told The Huffington Post in an exclusive report that they were bullied by authorities to lie.
With no real evidence on hand, prosecutors got creative and manipulated the words of Phipps songs to develop a weapon the all-white jury could more easily identify with: a black thug and his rap music. Prosecutors selectively misquoted his lyrics and took them out of context to incriminate the defendant.
Now, as Phipps sits in his cold cell, he doesn’t hear himself singing “Murda, Murda, Kill, Kill.” He hears the botched version that Assistant District Attorney Bruce Dearing recited to jurors — part of the closing argument to a case that leaves Phipps just halfway through a 30-year sentence.
“I didn’t have any criminal history for them to look into, so I guess they had to find some indication that [I have] a dark side,” Phipps told HuffPost. “So that’s when they turned to the music.”
Now think back to artists like John Lennon, Johnny Cash, Bob Dylan and other celebrated songwriters. Surely, if the lyrics to their music was taken out of context, it could be used to portray them as violent, too. But only notable hip-hop stars like Snoop Dogg, Beanie Sigel and Lil Boosie collaborator B.G. — have had this happen. And in their case, the music was used against them in court.
Phipps’ fate was sealed when Dearing linked the imagery in his songs to the charges he faced. In one of the most dramatic moments from his closing, Dearing told the all-white jury:
“This defendant who did this is the same defendant whose message is, ‘Murder murder, kill, kill, you f**k with me you get a bullet in your brain.’ You don’t have to be a genius to figure out that one plus one equals two.”
And the jury ate it up, according to Robert Hammell, who served as the jury foreman.
“The music — the lyrics — they played all that s**t [in court],” Hammell said. “I don’t listen to that s**t, but the music might have been the problem. The rap got his mind all messed up. He was living a life that he thought he was a gangsta. He was making it big time with the gold chains and all that s**t that went with it. To shoot somebody in a public place on the dance floor, you gotta think you’re a bad son of a b***h.”
What Hammell and the other jurors didn’t know was that the lyrics Dearing quoted were far from accurate. Those words weren’t taken from any single song. They were selectively spliced together.
See the emotional interview by Mac Phipps’ parents directly below and read more on the case at Huffington Post