Ja Rule turned himself in to begin a two-year prison sentence on weapons possession charges on June 8.
According to TMZ, Ja Rule’s final words to his wife, associate Ron Robinson, lawyer Stacey Richman and various other family members who accompanied him before entering the criminal courts building in lower Manhattan were, “Real life is a fantasy, f— fame… I’m ready for this to get over with. I am focused.”
According to MTV, the 35-year-old rapper, dressed in a gray suit and looking somber, made his way to the 13th floor of the building and appeared before a magistrate who formally sentenced him to two years in prison.
The sentence follows Rule’s guilty plea in December to attempted criminal possession of a weapon stemming from a 2007 gun bust in New York, during which cops found a loaded semi-automatic .40-caliber Taurus handgun, with the serial number scratched off, hidden in the back of the rapper’s Maybach.
The courtroom became a sorrowful scene as Rule was handcuffed and led out of the room, shouting to his family in the back, “See y’all.” His family becoming visibly upset, with some members even tearing up, responded with “We love you,” prompting Ja Rule to call back, “I love y’all too” as he was escorted to detention.
The Murder Inc. rapper will now spend up to two weeks in New York’s Rikers Island jail before being transferred to a correctional facility in upstate New York.
Richman believes that with good behavior, Rule could be released from prison in 18 to 20 months.
In April, Rule explained that he regretted having to go to prison (“I’m disappointed. I’m mad at myself”) but expressed hope that others will learn from his mistake.
“This is something that’s bad, but there’s gotta be some good that comes out of it,” he said. “Even if there are other kids that look at me and say, ‘Let me put my burner down.’ Even if it’s that, then there is something learned from my mistakes.”
Hopefully, Rule’s own tragic experience will not be in vain. –nicholas robinson