Rappers Insane Clown Posse have had their lawsuit against top U.S. authorities dismissed after objecting to a report which labelled their fans gang members. In January (14), Violent J, real name Joseph Bruce, and Shaggy 2 Dope, real name Joey Utsler, joined forces with four fans to sue officials at the U.S. Justice Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation in the U.S. Federal District Court in Michigan, claiming their constitutional rights of free expression and association and due process were violated by the 2011 National Gang Threat Assessment.
The fans, who call themselves Juggalos, also alleged they had been subject to police harassment because of the designation, but last week (ends06Jul14) a federal judge ruled officials in the U.S. government were not responsible for the report from the state police agencies and dismissed the case.
The plaintiffs have since decided to challenge the decision and on Tuesday (08Jul14), they filed an appeal to have the judge's ruling reviewed.
Insane Clown Posse's annual Gathering Of The Juggalos music festival has been relocated from Illinois to Missouri. Promoters for the show, which features the rap duo as headliners, have not gone into detail about the move, but the festival has developed a negative reputation over the past six years following on-site drug overdoses, fights, arrests and deaths.
In 2010, attendees threw stones, bottles and faeces at U.S. reality star Tila Tequila and in 2013, a fan was found dead on the festival grounds.
This year's four-day event is scheduled to take place in August (14) at the CryBaby Campground in Kaiser.
In addition to the rappers' festival troubles, they are also currently embroiled in a battle with the U.S. Justice Department after their fans were labelled gang members.
Violent J, real name Joseph Bruce, and Shaggy 2 Dope, real name Joey Utsler, claim their fan's constitutional rights are being violated by the distinction.
Rappers Insane Clown Posse have filed a lawsuit against officials at the U.S. Justice Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation over a report which labelled their fans gang members. Violent J, real name Joseph Bruce, and Shaggy 2 Dope, real name Joey Utsler, and four fans filed the legal paperwork on Wednesday (08Jan14) in the U.S. Federal District Court in Michigan, claiming their constitutional rights of free expression and association and due process were violated by the 2011 National Gang Threat Assessment.
The fans, who call themselves Juggalos, also allege they have been subject to police harassment because of the designation.
Violent J says, "When the label first come out, I laughed at it. I had no idea how much it would effect us. Now it's like a growing disease. It's affecting everything ICP does. We're going to fight this to the death, 'cause (sic) it's not true. It's stupid. It's ridiculous."
Shaggy 2 Dope adds, "We're not a gang. We're a family - a diverse group of men and women united by our love of music, and nothing more. We're not a threat, a public menace or a danger to society... and it's time the FBI recognises that. We will prevail in this fight to clear the Juggalo family name, because not to would be bulls**t."
The case is the latest legal woe for the rappers - they are facing a wrongful termination lawsuit from a former publicist, who is also accusing them of harassment.
Rappers Insane Clown Posse have been slapped with a wrongful termination lawsuit from their former publicist amid allegations of harassment. Andrea Pellegrini, who also served as the duo's lawyer, claims she was "mocked" and "belittled" and became "the subject of sexual advances" at the band's Psychopathic Records offices in Michigan, adding she was fired after reporting the acts to label bosses.
Pellegrini has listed a series of reported incidents in her court papers, dating from 2009 to her termination in November, 2012, including a number of run-ins with label employee Dan Diamond, aka Dirty Dan.
She alleges Diamond would "yell and demean" her on a "regular basis" and call her a "b**ch", while he would often make inappropriate sex comments towards her her and gifted her with sex toys.
Pellegrini goes on to claim that she was asked to do "illegal and/or unethical things" during her employment, including sourcing automatic submachine guns for a photo shoot.
Both rappers Joseph Bruce, aka Violent J, and Joseph Ulster, aka Shaggy 2 Dope, have been named in the lawsuit, alongside Diamond, company president William Dail and Pellegrini's former supervisor, Robert Bruce.
She is demanding compensation for emotional distress, pain and suffering, in addition to legal fees and medical expenses.
If Tracy Morgan and Demi Moore's hospital visits have taught us anything this week it's that celebrities suffer from human problems just like the rest of us and Brad Pitt is no exception. In a recent interview with The Hollywood Reporter magazine, the actor revealed that in his early days of stardom, he used drugs as a way to escape from the pressures of the spotlight, and the practice eventually led to his battle with depression. Ah, welcome to the joys of stardom.
Pitt told the magazine, “I got really sick of myself at the end of the 1990s: I was hiding out from the celebrity thing; I was smoking way too much dope; I was sitting on the couch and just turning into a doughnut; and I really got irritated with myself." But drug problems weren't the only struggles he faced. Additionally, the Moneyball star started having some pretty dark, depressing thoughts. Pitt said, “I used to deal with depression, but I don’t now, not this decade — maybe last decade. But that’s also figuring out who you are. He continued, saying, “I see it as a great education, as one of the seasons or a semester: ‘This semester I was majoring in depression.’ I was doing the same thing every night and numbing myself to sleep — the same routine: Couldn’t wait to get home and hide out. But that feeling of unease was growing and one night I just said, ‘This is a waste.’”
Luckily, a trip to the impoverished city of Casablanca, Morocco gave Pitt the wake-up call he needed to snap him out of his funk. He recalled, “I just quit. I stopped grass then — I mean, pretty much — and decided to get off the couch." And we're all pretty glad he did since he's contributed much to the world both on- and off-screen (he's even up for Best Actor in this year's Academy Awards).
Looking back, Pitt realizes he learned a lot from those little bumps along the way, saying, “This idea of perpetual happiness is crazy and overrated, because those dark moments fuel you for the next bright moments; each one helps you appreciate the other." And although it's hard to picture Brad Pitt hitting rock bottom like that (I thought the shaggy goatee was about the extent of it), you have to admire his attitude toward the whole thing and how he's kept himself pretty grounded. It's no wonder he still remains one of the most famous actors of our time -- no depression or drugs (or cane) can bring this guy down. He's the Hollywood creme of the crop.
Click on the image below for more photos of Brad Pitt.
Two members of the rap group Junior M.A.F.I.A. and a bodyguard employed by the group have been charged in connection with a shooting outside a New York deli, police told The Associated Press.
Rappers Little Caesar--whose real name is James Lloyd, 23--and Banger--Antoine Spain, 23--and their bodyguard Suif Jackson, 31, were arrested Friday and charged with attempted murder, reckless endangerment and criminal possession of a weapon. Two 9mm handguns were found in a hidden compartment of the car they allegedly fired the shots from. The guns are registered to rapper Lil' Kim, who is also a member of Junior M.A.F.I.A., police said.
Actress Tisha Campbell-Martin and her husband, actor Duane Martin, gave birth to Xen Martin, their 8-pound, 11-ounce son, on Wednesday. Both mother and baby are doing well, her manager, Gina Rugolo-Judd, told The Associated Press on Friday. Campbell-Martin played Gina, Martin Lawrence's girlfriend, on the Fox series Martin.
Country music Oak Ridge Boys' member William Lee Golden and wife, Brenda, welcomed a 6 pound baby boy, Solomon Golden, Friday, in Nashville, Tenn. "He looks wise already,'' Golden commented. This is the couple's first child, but Golden has three sons from a previous marriage, reports The Associated Press.
Michael Houston, brother of famed diva Whitney Houston, was arrested Wednesday and charged with cocaine, marijuana and drug paraphernalia possession, and being under the influence of drugs, Launch.com reports. Police searched his car and found 14 partially smoked marijuana cigarettes, a bag of marijuana, and cocaine. Michael Houston was arraigned at 12:30 a.m. Thursday, and released on a $3,500 bail.
A member of the rap group Insane Clown Posse pleaded no contest to charges stemming from a local bar fight. Joseph W. Utsler--also called Shaggy 2 Dope--entered no contest pleas to misdemeanor charges of battery and disorderly conduct Thursday in Wisconsin's Eau Claire County Circuit Court. Utsler paid $396 in fines and court costs, reports The Associated Press.
Singer-songwriter Dale Watson, 37, pays tribute to his fiancée, Terri Herbert, who died in a car accident last September, on his new CD Every Song I Write Is for You. "The album is a chronicle of grief, if you will,'' Watson told The Associated Press.
Lynyrd Skynyrd resumed their tour Saturday at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, following the death of bassist Leon Wilkeson on July 29.
The Backstreet Boys are on course to continue their tour following AJ McLean's release on Aug. 4, from the rehabilitation center where he had been staying since early July. McLean, who underwent treatment for alcoholism, depression and anxiety, has been moved to a "transitional care" facility in Los Angeles, according to the Backstreet Boys' publicists. The Backstreet Boys tour will resume on Aug. 24 at the Bradley Center in Milwaukee, WI and end at the Coors Amphitheater in Oct. 20 in Chula Vista, CA.
Irish pop group U2 has launched a European tour with a plea to Northern Ireland to ''Give peace a chance," reports Reuters. "Compromise is not such a bad word after all,'' lead singer Bono told the crowd in Manchester, England Saturday night. "Our prayer is that this week brave people make brave decisions and this little island across the little channel does not go back to war,'' Bono said.