Lawyer says Tip wasn’t told he could only travel with his wife during halfway-house transfer.
By Rob Markman
“Bureau of Prison officials did not specifically state at any time that T.I. was limited to being in the vehicle with his wife and no one else,” Tip’s attorney Steve Sadow told MTV News. “There is nothing that was specifically instructed or directed on this.”
On Thursday (September 8), TMZ published an incident report that said T.I. was on the bus with his wife, his manager and two VH1 producers. His manager and the television producers were not authorized to be aboard the bus, according to the report. The report also suggested that T.I. was conducting business during the interstate ride — a violation of his furlough.
According to T.I.’s lawyer, however, the Federal Bureau of Prisons didn’t communicate any stipulations on how the August 31 transfer was to be handled. T.I. filled out a Furlough Application, which MTV News has obtained, in which he declared he would travel from Forrest City Prison to the Atlanta halfway house via a “private owned vehicle” and that he would be traveling with his wife, Tameka Harris. “It doesn’t say “list all of the individuals that you are going to be with” or “you may not be with anyone else,” ” Sadow said.
MTV News has learned that the Trap Muzik rapper is now being held in United States Penitentiary in Atlanta until he is able to schedule a disciplinary hearing. Regardless of the outcome, T.I. will have satisfied his 11-month probation-violation sentence and be released from custody September 29.
Initially, it was reported that T.I. was sent back to prison because the luxury tour bus in which he traveled wasn’t an acceptable mode of transportation.
The rapper’s lawyer stressed that, at the moment, these are just allegations, but contends that T.I. did nothing wrong. “He had no reason to think there would be a problem traveling with these particular people, because his manager had been approved for visitation and had seen him several times at the facility in Arkansas and the producer had been approved for visitation and had seen him several times,” his attorney said.
As far as the issue of whether T.I. was discussing business on the bus, Sadow made it clear that he already had a deal with VH1 for a new reality series and a separate book deal in place before the transfer.
The best possible outcome at this point for the rapper is that, after his discipline hearing, he would be cleared of any wrongdoing and returned to the halfway house, but as of now, no date for the hearing has been set.
MTV News reached out to the Federal Bureau of Prisons and a VH1 press representative, both of whom declined to comment for this story.