The judge tore into him at his sentencing.
Rapper YoungBoy Never Broke Again has been sentenced to three years of probation for aggravated assault with a firearm. The charge stems from a drive-by shooting in Old South Baton Rouge in November and YoungBoy’s sentence comes with a 10-year suspended prison sentence.
The rapper whose real name is Kentrell Gaulden pled guilty to the charge after being booked back in February on the much graver charge of attempted first-degree murder. Rather than contest those two counts, Gaulden pled guilty to a lesser charge in May. At his sentencing hearing, Gaulden and the judge went back-and-forth about his rap career, violent choices and young fatherhood.
“I wasn’t very happy with the circumstances of your case, not at all,” District Judge Bonnie Jackson told Gaulden, according to The Advocate. “I take full responsibility for what happened. I’m sorry,” Gaulden responded. “It wasn’t supposed to go that way.”
Jackson wasn’t quite buying Gaulden’s apologies, saying that he “went looking for trouble and found it.” The judge added that the only thing standing between Gaulden and a charge with a life sentence attached was poor aim. “Fortunately, you all were bad shots,” she said.
When Gaulden defended himself later in the exchange by saying that he hadn’t killed anyone, the judge wasn’t having it. “But you could have,” she said. “It wasn’t for lack of trying. You weren’t a good shot.”
Jackson said that she “didn’t care at all” about Gaulden’s status as an up-and-coming rapper, but still took a second to accuse his music as being a part of the problem. “Your genre has a lot to do with the mindset people have,” she said. “Your genre has normalized violence.”
YoungBoy’s lawyer defended his client, saying that he’s trying to be a good person. “I genuinely find him to be a good-hearted, kind, sweet young man,” attorney James Manasseh said.
When the judge attacked YoungBoy for having 3 kids at the young age of 17, the rapper said that the children are a part of the reason he’s going to keep it on the straight-and-narrow.
“I promise to do right,” he said. “I’m committed to my family.” YoungBoy lives in New Orleans now, away from the lifelong affiliations and trouble that might find him in his hometown, but Jackson noted that New Orleans has similar problems with gun violence.
“It was a challenge,” Gaulden recently said of growing up where he did. “Baton Rouge is all about staying alive. It don’t matter if you in that set or you out that set. Ain’t no hiding from gun violence. Ain’t no hiding from violence, period. It’s either jail or death, like literally. Ain’t no living out there.”
Even so, she told the young rapper that “failure is not an option.”
In addition to the probation, the rapper was fined $5000 and ordered to perform 250 hours of community service.
Will he turn it around?
Recently, YoungBoy opened up about his anger issues and his time in jail. Watch him get candid up top.
What do you think? Was the judge being too harsh on the rapper? Was the sentence too light for the crime committed? Was she using the moment to vent on some things that weren’t necessarily germane to the case? Let us know in the comments and be sure to SHARE this article.