After finishing a sentence for weapons charges earlier this year, T.I. was poised to have the comeback of the fall.
The multiplatinum rapper starred in the nation’s No. 1 movie, recently married his longtime girlfriend, taped a music special for VH1 and was wrapping up a new album. But after an arrest Wednesday in California, there are questions about whether he’s returning to the music charts — or prison.
The Grammy-winning hitmaker, who is on three years of probation, was taken into custody with wife Tameka “Tiny” Cottle on suspicion of possessing methamphetamines after police pulled over their Maybach in West Hollywood. They were released on $10,000 bail early Thursday.
While charges have yet to be filed, the case has the potential to put one of music’s top names in behind bars yet again.
“We’re not making any observations at this time,” said Ed Garland, a defense attorney for T.I. “This is an unfortunate occurrence, and we do not know what the outcome will be.”
His music label, Atlantic Records, also said it “would be premature to speculate about the current situation given that there is an ongoing investigation of this matter.”
Known as the “King of the South,” T.I is a top name in hip-hop, and pop. Born as Clifford Harris, he sold millions of albums since his debut and racked up hits like “Whatever You Like” and “U Don’t Know Me.” He also had top collaborations with artists including Rihanna, Jay-Z and Justin Timberlake.
But his celebrated career was put in jeopardy in 2007 when he was caught trying to buy semiautomatic weapons on the way to a BET Awards show. The Atlanta rapper, who has served time for drug and other offenses, pleaded guilty to weapons charges and served seven months in an Arkansas prison and three months in a halfway house in Georgia.
He was ordered not to commit another federal, state or local crime while on supervised release, or to illegally possess a controlled substance. He was also told to take at least three drug tests after his release and to participate in a drug and alcohol treatment program.
T.I. didn’t appear to need government intervention to stay out of trouble. The rapper talked of a new, positive start: He spoke to kids about the dangers of drugs and guns, and former United Nations Ambassador Andrew Young was one of his supporters. As he prepared for his most recent sentence, the rapper starred in the MTV reality show, “T.I.’s Road to Redemption: 45 Days to Go.”
“Right now, it’s all about moving forward and just acknowledging the blessing that are here today. … Just moving past the regrets of yesterday — the things that could’ve been done betterAfter his release, he wasted little time returning to the spotlight. He released new music and was one of the stars of “Takers,” a shoot-’em-up about an armored truck robbery that goes bad. He is working on an album, which was slated to come out this year, and last month, he taped a VH1 “Storytellers” performance.
T.I. also married Cottle, the former singer for the 1990s R&B group Xscape; she has found new fame as the star of the BET reality show “Tiny & Toya.”
Cottle took to her Twitter on Thursday, thanking fans for support and prayers. “We love u guys:) going 2bed now! So glad 2b n a nice clean bed,” she wrote.
A representative for VH1 said it was too early to determine how his arrest might affect the upcoming special. A representative for “Takers” did not immediately return a request for comment.
T.I.’s probation officer has asked him to return to …..