Rapper A$AP Rocky cut a subdued figure as he appeared in court today to hear a former band member describe how the star nearly killed him in a hail of gunfire.
As rumors swirl that singing superstar Rihanna is planning a comeback after five years out, boyfriend Rocky, real name Rakim Mayers, is facing up to eight years in jail if convicted on two felony counts of assault with a semi-automatic firearm.
Wearing a facemask and dressed in a sober three-piece suit the Harlem-born hip hop star heard fellow A$AP Mob member Terell Ephron tell the court that Mayers, 35, threatened to kill him before firing at least four shots towards him on November 6, 2021.
One shot hit him in the hand but it was the following day before Ephron summoned up the courage to report the shooting and a warrant was issued for Mayers’ arrest.
Ephron told the preliminary hearing at LA Superior Court how their relationship deteriorated as Mayers’ career exploded and others in the group were left behind.
Rapper A$AP Rocky – boyfriend of singing superstar Rihanna and father of her children – appeared in Los Angeles Supreme Court on Wednesday to hear former friend Terell Ephron accuse him of shooting him in 2021
He cut a subdued figure as he heard the case which could see him jailed for eight years
Rapper A$AP Rocky has pleaded not guilty to two felony charges. The shooting occurred in November 2021, when his girlfriend, Rihanna, was four months pregnant
On the night of the shooting Mayers called him to a meeting at an LA hotel where they argued before Mayers pulled a gun on him, TMZ reported.
‘I’ll kill you right now,’ Ephron recalled him yelling as Mayers held a gun to his stomach, before firing a series of shots as he left the room.
Mayers, the father of Rihanna’s two children, was arrested in April last year as he returned to LAX airport as he stepped off a private plane from Barbados where he had been on vacation with his then-pregnant girlfriend.
Officers were also seen outside of his LA home, smashing into the gate with a battering ram, before apparently raiding the property. Detectives seized multiple boxes of evidence from the house.
The couple left three-month-old Riot and 18-month-old RZA at home with a babysitter as they enjoyed a night out at Wally’s Beverly Hills on Saturday.
Rumors have been swirling about Rihanna’s plans for a comeback following her five year hiatus from the music industry.
It was alleged that the Grammy award-winning star has been planning a world tour for 2024/2025 after striking an eye-watering $39 million deal with Live Nation.
Along with her tour, the singer and songwriter is also said to have created two albums worth of new material.
A source said ‘Rihanna is quietly planning a comeback tour after signing with Live Nation.’
As on his previous appearances he wore a medical face mask as he arrived at court
Mayers stood as Judge Kerry L. White addressed him from the bench
Glamorous: Rihanna looked glamorous as she and partner A$AP Rocky headed for a romantic dinner Saturday in Beverly Hills, showcasing her toned legs in an animal print dress with sheer black stockings and black patent leather pumps
Red: The Umbrella artist’s makeup looked natural with a bold red lip for a pop of color. She accessorized with a large pair of black sunglasses. Rocky, 35, looked dapper in a classic black suit with a white shirt, and dark sunglasses
Tour rumors: There have been rumors Rihanna, who has taken five year break from the music industry may be gearing up to release new music and even go on tour, however, a source told Billboard, ‘no tour has been confirmed for Rihanna’ (Pictured in New York in February 2022)
Rocky, real name Rakim Mayers, allegedly shot at least four bullets at his former friend
Horrifying allegations: A$AP Rocky’s high school best friend, Terell Ephron, who goes by aka A$AP Relli, has stepped forward as the man allegedly shot in November 2021
Rapper A$AP Rocky posted $550,000 bond and was spotted leaving jail after his shock arrest on Wednesday
Officers were seen outside of Mayers’ LA home, smashing into the gate with a battering ram, before apparently raiding the property
Detectives leave the rapper’s house with what appears to be box full of evidence
Mayers’ legal team arrived at his property as the police raid was still underway
It was not until four months after his arrest that LA DA George Gascon decided that the charges were serious enough to press for felony status, rather than misdemeanor which would have meant only a maximum of one year jail time for each count.
‘Discharging a gun in a public place is a serious offense that could have ended with tragic consequences not only for the person targeted but also for innocent bystanders visiting Hollywood,’ said Gascon after announcing the charges.
‘My office conducted a thorough review not the evidence in this case and determined that the addition of a special firearm allegation was warranted.’
But the alleged attack on Ephron is not Mayers’ first run-in with the law.
The rapper was arrested in Sweden in 2019 after a fight broke out on the street between his entourage and two men.
Mayers was convicted of assault, issued a suspended prison sentence and required to may more than $1,000 in damages. He reportedly served a month in jail before his sentence was handed down.
The performer, raised in New York City’s Harlem neighborhood, was also charged with attempted murder at 16 years old.
Mayers, who started selling drugs during his youth, was reportedly bullied by an older man. He went to the alleged bully’s house to confront him and ended up firing a gun at him.
‘He tried to come at me in front of some ladies. And I was little. He was a little bit older than me,’ Mayers said two years ago, detailing the incident on Untold Stories of Hip-Hop.
The teen, who was carrying a gun for protection, believed his alleged bully was reaching for a weapon after their discussion went south. He claimed he never intended to shoot the man.
‘I just started letting off,’ Mayers said of the confrontation. ‘I ain’t wanted to hit him. They hit me with attempted murder at first, then it kept getting dropped down.’
Mayers was arrested shortly after the shooting and spent time at the city’s infamous jail on Rikers Island. However, due to his age and the nature of the incident, the attempted murder charges were reduced.
Rihanna and Mayers were initially linked in November 2020 after it was reported that they were seeing each other following the singer’s split from her ex-boyfriend, Hassan Jameel.
The two had been acquainted ever since the early 2010s, when they began performing and touring with each other.
Mayers first spoke about their relationship in May 2021 in a GQ interview, where he called Rihanna ‘the love of his life.’ The couple is pictured together at Rihanna’s Los Angeles Fenty store in February 2022
Mayers was enjoying himself in Barbados just days before his arrest as Rihanna watched from shore through binoculars
The rapper met his girlfriend’s family while on the Caribbean island where she was born
Wednesday’s incident is not Mayers’ first run-in with the law. The rapper was arrested for assault in Sweden in 2019 after a fight broke out on the street between his entourage and two men. He was also charged with attempted murder as a teen.
A$AP Rocky’s $4.4 million home in Los Angeles
Rihanna and Mayers remained friends for much of the decade before People confirmed that they were officially dating in November 2020. The pair embarked on a romantic vacation to the singer’s native Barbados in December and the rapper spent Christmas with his girlfriend’s family.
Mayers first spoke about their relationship in May 2021 in a GQ interview, where he called the Barbados born singer ‘the love of his life.’
The Fashion Killa hitmaker – who has never been dogged with claims of infidelity in the past – said: ‘She amounts to probably, like, a million of the other ones…. I think when you know, you know. She’s the One.’
Mayers is currently free on a $500,000 bond and is due in court again on Thursday.