*The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department said Wednesday authorities will not pursue criminal charges against rapper The Game after he apologized for his Twitter account’s role in causing a flood of telephone calls into the department’s Compton station, reports CNN.
[Scroll down to watch Game’s explanation on CNN.]
The artist, whose real name is Jayceon Taylor and who also uses the name Charles Louboutin on his Twitter page, apologized earlier Wednesday for a tweet that gave the sheriff’s station’s phone number, prompting hundreds of his followers to overwhelm deputies and dispatchers with calls.
The sheriff’s department issued a statement in response, saying the apology was “relevant and well received.”
“His willingness to help share with the media and the community that the safety of the public is what is most important, is a great message,” the department said.
“Based upon our investigation, as well as consultation with the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office, the LASD considers the criminal investigation into this matter closed. The Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department will not be seeking criminal charges.”
In issuing his apology, Taylor said it wasn’t he, but a friend, who tweeted the phone number, and that it was purely an accident that the station number was tweeted.
“It was a simple mishap,” the rapper said. “I was doing a photo shoot, and it was downtown Los Angeles, and one of my boys picked up my phone and started tweeting random numbers. …Whenever his phone is laying around and my phone is laying around, we tweet from each other’s page. That’s what happened.”
The tweet on Friday that gave the phone number was confused with an earlier tweet about a music internship that the rapper was offering to any of his more than 580,000 followers on his Twitter page, Taylor said.
“The tweet about the internship was earlier in that day, and it got lost in the media with all that. He never sent out a tweet that said these numbers are for the internship. He tweeted a bunch of numbers jokingly. We always play pranks on each other,” he said.
But Taylor took responsibility for the early tweets about the internship.
“We had already contacted (the interns) and had the interns come to the photo shoot and start working,” Taylor said. “None of (the tweets) stated call this number for an internship.”
The rapper added: “My sincerest apologies to the sheriff’s department, and it was a joke gone wrong.”
Sheriff’s Department Capt. Mike Parker said authorities had considered charging The Game with at least three misdemeanors.
The sheriff’s department alleged that the rapper’s tweets appeared to be listing the sheriff’s station in Compton as the contact number for the internship, prompting the mad rush of calls that forced the sheriff’s office to bring in additional manpower to answer phones.
Authorities said the calls lasted two hours Friday evening and that help was delayed in response to urgent calls about a missing person, a spousal assault, two robberies and a stolen car.
“I never want to be the source of anything happening wrong to anybody or anybody not being able to get through to the help lines at the police station,” Taylor said. “I don’t ever want to see anyone hurt. I’ve got kids at home. I’m not that guy.”
Taylor said the tweets on his account listed a 10-digit phone for the sheriff’s station: “When people are in trouble, they call 911, and that’s not to take away from the police and them doing a job or them saying there was a robbery.”
Many residents dial a station directly with the 10-digit number for urgent calls, even though the 911 emergency is at their disposal, a sheriff’s department spokesman said.