Busta Ordered to Pay $100,000 in Damages to Assault Victim
Busta Rhymes has been ordered to pay a sum of $100,000 in damages to a man who says he was beaten up by the rapper and his bodyguard back in 2005, according to The New York Post. In his lawsuit filed in Manhattan Supreme Court, plaintiff Melvin Smith claimed that he approached Busta outside of a Manhattan deli seeking an autograph, but instead ended up being assaulted by the rapper and his bodyguard Troy Green. According to the suit, the pair "without any just cause or provocation, maliciously assaulted, beat, pushed and shoved [Smith] and beat him," causing the man serious bodily injury and causing him to miss work. Smith's attorney, Bruce Regenstreich, stated that the default judgment came as a result of Busta's indifference to the suit despite several attempts by his client to serve the rapper and proceed with a trial. "He just ignored everything," Regenstreich is quoted as saying. The sum of $100,000 was decided upon by a court-appointed referee, and was approved last month by a Manhattan judge. In related news, Busta was released from custody yesterday after he posted a $3,500 bail following his arraignment on separate assault charges stemming from an incident involving his former driver Eddie Hatchett. The rapper faces up to a year in prison on the misdemeanor charge.