Rapper Vanilla Ice was spared from doing jail time after he accepted a plea deal over a grand theft charge filed in February.
The grand theft charge against Vanilla Ice was considered as a third-degree felony. The maximum penalty for said crime includes five years of imprisonment and a fine of $5,000. However, because of the plea deal, the artist will only be doing 100 hours of community service for Habitat for Humanity, a Christian housing organization in Palm Beach Country. The monetary penalty has also been significantly reduced to $1,333.
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Although the rapper asserted that it was all just a misunderstanding, the plea requires him to acknowledge that he is guilty of the crime. When Vanilla Ice successfully complies with all the terms of the plea deal, the grand theft charge will be dropped. Vanilla Ice’s defense attorney Bradford Cohen said that his client is happy that the charge was resolved before the start of the fifth season of his TV series.
“He’s pretty thrilled. He’s never really been in trouble like this before so obviously he was nervous,” he explained.
Apparently, the rapper – famous for the hit song “Ice, Ice Baby” – opted for a career change. He is now a general contractor who hosts a reality show entitled The Vanilla Project. In the program, Vanilla Ice and his crew renovate foreclosed homes in Florida and one of their projects included the one located next door to the house that the rapper was accused of stealing from.
He was arrested for stealing art work, furniture and a pool heater from a million dollar home that belonged to Morgan James Wilbur III. Initially, Vanilla Ice claimed to own the house. Later, he revised this story saying that he was planning to buy the house and was waiting for the finalization of the deal. He said that he found the stolen items out on the curb but his own foreman admitted to receiving instructions to take all that stuff from the house since the artist had already purchased it.
Despite the foreman’s statement, Vanilla Ice insisted that the accusations against him were “overblown.” He stood by his story and blamed squatters in the property for leaving the stolen stuff outside.
Vanilla Ice was also accused of burglary when he was arrested but prosecutors never formally filed the said charge.
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