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Archive for Thursday, February 15, 2001

Rapper agrees to plead guilty to concealed weapon charge

February 15, 2001

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— Rap superstar Eminem, who is nominated for four awards at next week's Grammys, has agreed to plead guilty to a charge of carrying a concealed weapon, prosecutors announced Wednesday.

Eminem faces up to five years in prison when he is sentenced on April 10.

However, a publicist for the controversial rapper, whose real name is Marshall Mathers III, said Eminem will seek probation.

"Marshall is looking forward to putting this matter behind him," Dennis Dennehey said.

In return for the plea, Macomb County assistant prosecutor David Portuesi said a charge of assault with a dangerous weapon was dropped. The rapper's sentence will be left up to the judge.

Portuesi said he was satisfied with the plea.

"We thought it was a reasonable offer, and apparently he did too. So this should resolve the matter," Portuesi said.

Eminem was charged after an altercation last June outside a nightclub. Police said he struck a man who was allegedly kissing Eminem's wife, Kim.

Eminem, who lives in Macomb County's Clinton Township, still faces charges in neighboring Oakland County of carrying a concealed weapon and brandishing a firearm in public. Dennehey had no comment on pending charges. Messages left with Eminem's attorneys were not immediately returned Wednesday.

Eminem's "The Marshall Mathers LP" has been nominated by the Recording Academy for album of the year, and the rapper is also nominated for three other awards. However, he has been criticized by gay and women's groups for his misogynist and anti-gay lyrics, and will be the subject of a protest by gay and women's groups at the Feb. 21 ceremony.

Eminem is scheduled to perform a duet at an awards show with openly gay entertainer Elton John. Dennehey said Wednesday's plea has no effect on the Grammys.

"He'll be there next week," he said.

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