Lawyer: Rapper Lil Durk didn’t have gun
BY RUMMANA HUSSAIN Criminal Courts Reporteremail@example.com June 6, 2013 12:52PM
Durk Banks / photo from Chicago Police
Updated: June 6, 2013 6:39PM
The lawyer for a popular Chicago rapper said the Def Jam artist was wrongfully arrested for a weapons charge even though another man admitted he had the gun in question.
Durk Banks, who is known as Lil Durk, tossed the stolen loaded automatic handgun into the backseat of a parked Hyundai Sonata when he spotted officers in the 7200 block of South Green Street early Wednesday morning, authorities said.
But prominent defense attorney Sam Adam Jr. said another man, Clarence January, copped to having the Glock.
January, a 20-year-old convicted felon, told police “this is my gun” and that he, not Banks, had the weapon, an affidavit signed by January said.
“He [January] tried to tell the officers at the time [that it was his gun] but they took the defendant anyway,” Adam told Cook County Judge Maria Kuriakos Ciesil Thursday.
Kuriakos Ciesil said she had to take into consideration the allegations prosecutors presented against Banks as well as his criminal past.
The judge ordered Banks, 20, held in lieu of $100,000 bail for unlawful use of a weapon by a felon.
Banks, who has close ties to troublemaking teen rapper Chief Keef, was sentenced to one year in prison for a 2012 aggravated unlawful use of a weapon conviction. The father of one is currently on parole for that crime.
On Thursday, Adam urged Kuriakos Ciesil to release Banks on his own recognizance, saying that at least nine people said they saw January with the gun.
A witness said he saw “two dudes” fighting in an alley and then saw January, who is nicknamed “BJ,” throw the weapon into the vehicle, according to a half dozen affidavits.
Another said, “Officers kept yelling, ‘Whose gun is this?’ BJ yelled, ‘It’s my gun.’”
Despite January’s insistence, he was brushed off and even allegedly told by a cop, “Give me reason to kill your black ass,” according to an affidavit.
January, who has several arrests under his belt, has a 2010 unlawful use of a weapon conviction. He was acquitted of attempted murder in March, according to court records.
Banks may have recently signed to a major record label, but he is new to the industry and hasn’t had the opportunity to earn much money, Adam said in court.
Banks’ Twitter account indicates that he is signed to Def Jam records and was scheduled to perform in Jamaica, N.Y., on Friday night.
Friday is also the day Banks’ pregnant wife is to be induced for labor, Adam said.
“She’s literally about to pop,” Adam said looking back at Banks’ wife as the courtroom burst out laughing at Adam’s choice of words.
According to a police report, Banks, of Melrose Park, has a tattoo on his neck that says “Blessed.”
He has another “Ta Ta” tattoo on his lower right arm.
Banks, who appeared in court with a jacket that had the words “Legend” written in the back, has performed with Chief Keef, Lil Reese and other members of the Keef-owned record label Glory Boyz Entertainment.