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Rapper Mystikal pleads not guilty to rape, drug charges

NEW ORLEAN — Rapper Mystikal pleaded not guilty Monday to rape, domestic abuse, false imprisonment and drug charges, stemming from a July incident in his Ascension Parish, Louisiana home.

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Mystikal, who was born Michael Tyler, is a New Orleans native who was popular in the early 2000s, The Advocate reported.

According to Rolling Stone, Tyler is accused of sexually assaulting a woman and holding her against her will. He is also charged with criminal damage to property, battery by strangulation, simple robbery and five drug charges.

Joel Pearce, Tyler’s lawyer, told The Associated Press that his client “doesn’t even do drugs” and that prosecutors have not yet made clear what Tyler is accused of stealing.

Tyler is currently being held in Ascension Parish Prison without bail, but Pearce said possible bond may be discussed at an Oct. 17 hearing, Rolling Stone reported.

Conviction on a first-degree rape charge carries a mandatory life sentence, according to The Advocate.

Tyler broke out in the 1990s and is best known for his 2000 hit single “Shake (It Fast),” the success of which fueled the sale of more than one million copies of his 2000 album “Let’s Get Ready.” He was nominated for two Grammy awards in early 2003, the newspaper reported.

According to Rolling Stone, Tyler was charged with first-degree rape and second-degree kidnapping in a separate 2017 case, but those charges were dismissed in December 2020, “following the discovery of additional evidence.”

He pleaded guilty in 2004, however, sexually assaulting his hair stylist and was required to register as a sex offender in 2010 after serving a six-year sentence, the entertainment news magazine reported.

-- The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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