Back in February we broke the story of Joseph Wayne McVey's latest drug charge. Back then things were looking pretty grim for the 33-year-old rapper/singer known as Z-Ro, or "the King of the Ghetto."
Based on his prior drug history, the District Attorney had just refiled the pending codeine possession charge against the Mo City Don with an enhanced penalty. The rapper had done some state jail time in the mid-2000s after violating the probation he got for a 2003 codeine rap, and after this second charge, he could have gotten years behind bars.
Back in February, when we broke the story, Z-Ro's attorney Robert Alton Jones said his client was innocent. He told us that authorities found a bottle of pharmaceutical cough syrup labeled with someone else's name on the prescription in the back seat of a car in which McVey was riding.
Jones said the enhanced penalty was nothing more than a prosecutorial bullying tactic. "They're trying to ramp up the charges and make him scared so he'll take something," he explained. "It is nothing more than a form of intimidation. It doesn't change the facts of the case at all."
The case is now resolved, and there's good news and bad news for Z-Ro fans.
Bad news first: Last Friday, the rapper was convicted.
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And now for the good news...
He won't be going to jail, unless he slips up. Just as it did in his 2003 charge, the state has found Z-Ro guilty and adjudicated that guilt. If he stays out of trouble until August 26, 2014, the conviction will be erased from his record.
Crack, Cocaine and Heroin are the titles of Z-Ro's last three, mostly critically acclaimed albums. Cocaine has a track called "Can't Leave Drank Alone." Let's hope he can.... If you are measuring sheer musical talent, no Houston rapper has ever been more gifted than the burly melodious gangsta with the voice of God.
We have a call in to McVey's attorney Robert Alton Jones, so we hope to be back with comments from Z-Ro's camp.