Busta Rhymes Concert Cancelled Following Negative Police Report
A homecoming concert featuring Busta Rhymes and Jim Jones at the University of Maryland Eastern Shore was abruptly canceled after school officials viewed a Maryland State Police report linking the performers to violence and gang activity. According to The Daily Times, on Tuesday (February 13) school administrators informed a packed auditorium of students that the show, approved in December and scheduled for February 21, would not be happening. Suzanne Street, the school’s director of public relations, confirmed that the shooting of Busta’s bodyguard Israel Ramirez in 2006 was a factor in the decision. “Their music advocates gang activity and violence, and with recent concerts, there has been [reports of] violence,” Street said. “The decisions are based on intelligence and in the best interest of students and the campus community.” She did not comment on what information the report held about Jim Jones. Students are up in arms about the cancellation. Mauresha Spencer, president of the UMES Student Government Association questioned the timing of the announcement and the origin of the intelligence report. “Why eight days before the concert are we being informed,” Spencer asked. “If three of the artists were confirmed in December, why are they just now being researched? [To] what report are they referring?” It is unclear whether or not the Maryland State Police offered the report to UMES officials, or whether the information was requested. A meeting between school officials and students will be held today (February 14) to discuss the report, a possible alternative event, and how the school plans to refund the 700 $20 and $35 tickets that were sold for the show.