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Hip-Hop News: Driver of Rapper Lil Kim Beaten By NYPD, Later Died
NYPD detectives are looking into the case of an alleged beat down of Lil Kim's limo driver.
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Posted by Dave
Rap News Network
3/21/2006 7:50:10 AM

Tags and topics realted to this article include Lil Kim. Hip Hop, Rap and Death.

O'Neil Solomon, a former convict who drove for both Ashanti and Kim, died on March 4, 11 days after the beating. The medical examiner said Solomon died from heart disease, not trauma.

The Civilian Complaint Review Board (CCRB), an independent board that looks into police brutality claims, opened a probe when Janice Pinheiro, a nurse who witnessed the February 21 incident, came forward to reveal that a gang of cops chased and later brutally beat Solomon.

"They just started to beat the mess out of him -- stomping him in the head, stomping him in the chest," Pinheiro told New York's Daily News. "I said, 'That's enough. Stop the beating, stop the beating. I see everything and I'm gonna report it. You're gonna kill him.'"

The following day, Pinheiro complained to the NYPD. The case was forwarded to the CCRB. A police official said the Internal Affairs Bureau is not taking part in the investigation because Solomon's arrest photos show no sign of abuse.

A source said an autopsy also found no trauma. On the other hand, Pinheiro swears up to 16 cops wanted Solomon's head once they caught up to him near his residence.

"I saw their faces," Pinheiro said. "They just looked so angry. There was one cop trying to move another cop out of the way so he could get a piece of him. He had his baton way up in the air and just started hitting him in the leg."

Pinheiro claims that she was handcuffed and taken to the 75th Precinct stationhouse after scolding the cops for their shady practices. She was later let go with no charges.

According to Lawrence Krause, Solomon's family attorney, the limo driver was charged with leaving the scene of a crime and released on $2,500 bail. He has previously been arrested for stolen property, assault weapons possession and sexual assault on a 13-year-old back in 2000.

Krause said Solomon checked himself into Brookdale University Hospital twice in the following days, noting that he felt sick. He began vomiting on March 4 and was taken to the hospital where he was later pronounced dead. Though the autopsy revealed that Solomon died of a cardiovascular disease, his family remains doubtful, citing that he was a health nut.

"A heart attack can come as a residual of many other things, and we believe, in this case, it was because of this beating," Krause told the Daily News.

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