That's what the NYPD is complaining about - the complete lack of cooperation from Busta Rhymes in the investigation of his bodyguard's murder during a video shoot two weeks ago. Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly implied that Rhymes (aka Trevor Smith) was withholding information about the shooting of Israel Ramirez. There have been conflicting accounts as to where Rhymes was during the incident - he told detectives he was on set, but he reportedly told others that he was outside when it seems that Ramirez got caught in an argument between other rappers. The NY Times looked at the habit of those in the rap world to keep quiet during police investigations, lest they look like a snitch:
Busta Rhymes, 33, whose given name is Trevor Smith, faces a dilemma that is has a particular resonance to the hip-hop world. By remaining silent, he is angering the family of Mr. Ramirez and a good number of his fans. But if he speaks to the authorities, he risks harming his so-called street credibility, which is cultivated by many rap artists and demanded by millions of their fans. Yet even on some urban radio talk shows and Internet chat rooms, a growing number of fans have called his silence cowardly and amoral, and in New York, a group of ministers and anti-violence advocates have called for a boycott of his music.
And in an interesting coincidence, a few hip-hop magazines will publish interviews with Rhymes where he claims he is "perfect"; the Post also reports that he slams "fellow New York rappers for becoming bogged down in a world of drugs and guns." In a world that models itself after the mafia (or at least ganster movies), we'd wonder if the various rap power brokers are having underground meetings for a stalemate to stop the madness.
And Rhymes did attend Ramirez's wake, but not his funeral.