Grammy winning rapper Lil’ Wayne is discovering the sound of silence in jail.
During his last month in prison, he’s confined in “punitive segregation,” where he’ll spend 23 hours a day alone.
The punishment was meted out after Wayne got caught with a contraband iPod. Officers found the telltale Apple earbuds and charger hidden in a bag of potato chips, while another inmate stashed the 28-year-old rapper’s MP3 player.
Inmates are allowed to listen to music on radios and headphones sold at the jail commissary, so the items are considered contraband.
“Possession of contraband is serious,” Rikers Island Correction Department spokesman Stephen Morello said, adding that it is, however, not as grave as violent offenses or being caught with a weapon, for example.
Wayne is serving a year-long sentence (shortened to eight months for otherwise good behavior) for attempted criminal possession of a weapon – a loaded semiautomatic gun.
Before being locked behind bars, Wayne assured fans he wouldn’t stop the music even as he faced the music.
“I’ll have an iPod, and I’ll make sure they keep sending me beats,” he told magazine Rolling Stone.
This isn’t the first time smuggled iPods have made headlines from prison. In 2009, two guards in Washington, D.C. were arrested after allegedly smuggling in must-have items for prisoners – namely iPods, cell phones and chargers.
Two male corrections officers and a female security guard were arrested this week for federal bribery charges on suspicion of accepting cash to smuggle cellphones and iPods. The men are now on administrative leave, the woman was released on personal recognizance.
An undercover FBI agent posing as the brother of an inmate bribed one of the men $300 to smuggle an iPod and charger inside the big house.
Sources: AP, Rolling Stone, Crime Scene