Vanilla Ice’s conviction has been dismissed, according to news from TMZ. The well-known rapper won’t have to serve any jail time for stealing things from a house next door to the one he was renovating. However, the 47-year-old host of The Vanilla Ice Project on the DIY Network has not gotten away completely scot-free.
People magazine reported that the rapper-turned-reality star will serve no jail time after he was arrested in February for allegedly stealing furnishings and other items from an abandoned house in Florida.
Last February, Vanilla Ice, whose real name is Robert Matthew Van Winkle, was arrested and charged with burglary residence and grand theft after he allegedly stole furniture, a pool heater, bicycles, and other items from a vacant Florida house. Vanilla Ice told police he thought the items were fair game because they were on the curb. However, Vanilla Ice’s foreman told the police a different story. He ratted on Vanilla Ice and said the stolen items were actually inside the house. The police recovered some of the items, and they were returned.
Vanilla Ice’s lawyers, Bradford Cohen and Joe LoRusso, persuaded the prosecutor to give the rapper a second chance. From the beginning, Cohen stated that it was just a misunderstanding. The prosecutor agreed to dismiss the charges, provided three conditions be met.
- Van Winkle must stay out of trouble for 9 months.
- Van Winkle must pay the homeowner’s estate between $1,100 and $1,300.
- Van Winkle must perform 100 hours of community service for Habitat for Humanity.
If Van Winkle meets all three conditions, the prosecutor will drop the grand-theft charges, and his record will be wiped clean.
Van Winkle’s lawyers believe the outcome is a reasonable one for everyone. Their client won’t have to go to trial, and they won’t have to present a defense for the rapper. Van Winkle shared that he has already been doing from 40 to 60 hours of charity work a month. Van Winkle says he had planned to do work for Habitat for Humanity anyway. Therefore, community service for him will be easy.
Now that the conviction has been dismissed, the “Ice Ice Baby” rapper can move on to other things. Cohen said, “This was the best possible solution to the entire misunderstanding, and now Rob can put this behind him.”
Do you think this outcome was the best possible solution? Or do you think the conviction should not have been dismissed, and Vanilla Ice should spend some time in jail?
[Photo by Jason Kempin/Getty Images]