Grammy-winning rapper Stanley “Flesh-N-Bone” Howse of Bone Thugs-N-Harmony was sentenced today to 12 years in prison for assault with an AK-47 rifle and being an ex-convict with a gun.
Howse had faced up to 19 years and eight months in prison, but Superior Court Judge Darlene Schempp gave him the lesser term after reviewing documents showing the rapper was abused as a child.
“This is one of the worst cases I’ve read in terms of childhood abuse,” the judge said.
‘I Know I Must Be Punished’ The rapper was convicted by a jury on June 15 of pointing an AK-47 at a man, despite the victim’s own testimony that Howse was a friend and never pulled a gun on him.
Defense attorney Jonathan Kissler, who had asked for a 10-year sentence, told the judge that his 27-year-old client “suffered horrendous childhood trauma, beatings, concussions” that affect his adult life.
“He loves guns and that’s something that bothers the court, bothers society and bothers himself,” Kissler said.
The lawyer also read a letter to the judge from the rapper.
“I know I must be punished,” Howse said.
Continuous Legal TroublesLast Dec. 26, police found an AK-47, a .223-caliber rifle and a .38-caliber revolver in the suburban Woodland Hills apartment where Howse was staying.
“I do understand the defendant has mental problems and he’s had a bad childhood,” Deputy District Attorney Shellie Samuels said in arguing for a stiff sentence due to Howse’s penchant for weapons.
“Who he is is a person who loves guns, doesn’t take orders from courts and has a propensity for violence,” the prosecutor said.
Howse has been convicted seven times since the mid-1990s of crimes ranging from assault to spousal abuse, according to court documents.
In 1994, Howse was convicted of assault and making terrorist threats. He was placed on two years’ probation and sentenced to 30 days in jail for violating earlier probation.
That same year, he was convicted of spousal battery and was sentenced to 45 days in jail and two years’ probation and later to another 60 days for violating probation, according to court records.
After three separate incidents in 1995, Howse was convicted of spousal abuse or battery and was sentenced to more than two months in jail and probation.
Last year, he was sentenced to 49 days, with an additional 42 days for violating probation after he pleaded no contest to assault, possessing an explosive device and making a terrorist threat.
On July 4, 1997, a neighbor complained to police about hearing gunshots at Howse’s rented Chatsworth home, and police found a homemade explosive device and shell casings in Howse’s back yard.
Days later, Howse allegedly threatened to kill the 64-year-old neighbor.
Howse is a founding member of the group that won a Grammy in 1997 for best rap performance for the song “Crossroads.”