Rapper T.I. reports to Forrest City prison

By Jamel Major - bio | email

FORREST CITY, AR (WMC-TV) - Rapper T.I. was back in the Mid-South Monday as he reported to an Arkansas prison.

T.I., whose birth name is Clifford Joseph Harris, Jr., arrived at the Forrest City Correctional Facility just before noon, riding in the backseat of a black SUV.  The vehicle's tinted windows made it difficult to catch a glimpse of the rapper, but observers were able to see his profile.

T.I.'s arrival had some residents buzzing, while others weren't sure why he was getting so much attention.

"I know a lot of people are complaining about all of the news cameras and all the press and everybody because he's here.  I don't see what the big deal is," Forrest City resident Mallori Parkman said.

A federal judge ordered T.I. to serve 11 more months inside the low security Arkansas prison after he was arrested in Los Angeles for drug possession.  

Before the judge's ruling, T.I. had pleaded for mercy, telling the court that he needed help for a drug addiction.

"Probably ain't gonna be like it was the first time, but he's back," Forrest City resident Adrian Applewhite said.

T.I. spent time inside the Forrest City Correctional Facility last year after he was convicted on federal weapons charges. He could have faced more time for felony drug possession, but prosecutors have agreed to drop those charges.

"He can't be no role model for the kids or nothing like that," Forrest City resident Shekeena Echols said.

Forrest City residents say they hope the famous rapper learns from his mistakes...

"The only thing I can say is he shouldn't have done what he did and he wouldn't be locked up in jail," Echols said. "That's the only thing I can say.  Evidently he didn't learn his lesson."

Copyright 2010 WMC-TV. All rights reserved.