Nov 14, 2014
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A short documentary from Reason TV that published Thursday focuses on whether prosecutors unfairly use rappers’ hip hop lyrics to help win court cases.

The piece centers on Richmond artist Deandre Mitchell, whose hip hop persona is Laz Da Boy. In 2012, Mitchell was indicted by a grand jury on two counts of attempted murder following two shootings in Antioch. The lyrics of three of his rap videos were used against him in the proceedings.

Mitchell says in the video that his lyrics do not prove he is a gang member or killer.

“Deandre is the family man, I have two kids and everything,” Mitchell said. “But when I do music, I build my character to be Laz Da Boy. It’s just another image.”

Watch the video, then discuss:


About the Author

Mike Aldax is the editor of the Richmond Standard. He has 13 years of journalism experience, most recently as a reporter for the San Francisco Examiner. He previously held roles as reporter and editor at Bay City News, Napa Valley Register, Garden Island Newspaper in Kaua’i, and the Queens Courier in New York City.