|Should Lil' Poopy, 10, Be in Da Club?|
|By CHRIS CONNELLY (@ChrisConnelly) , GWEN GOWEN and LAUREN EFFRON (@LEffronG)||Jun 18, 2013, 7:18 PM|
He's a grade school rapper with the swagger of an original gangster, a 10-year-old kid who is killing it live and savoring the spoils.
His name is Lil' Poopy -- real name, Luie Rivera Jr. -- a pint-sized hip-hop sensation from Brockton, Mass. When asked how many girls he had kissed, he said, "In one show? Ten."
Poopy's career is taking off, but lately, critics are asking, what is a 10-year-old boy doing in some very adult situations?
Meet Luis Rivera, Lil' Poopy's father, who said he came up with his son's nickname because he "used to poop a lot" as a baby.
"I would be changing his diaper and he would poop all over my hands," Rivera said.
Poopy performs with grown-up rap stars -- last year, at just 9 years old, Poopy flew to Miami to do a video with Diddy -- and sings along to lyrics with adult themes.
But Poopy is also scooping up controversy with lyrics he says he writes himself, including one song that uses the words, "I do it hard, I do it big, I do it times three. You might catch me with two or three mommies, bad hotties, super bad body."
It was only last February when the Poop hit the fans with a sexually suggestive video on YouTube. The local Brockton paper, The Brockton Enterprise, called the fourth grader's extracurricular activities shown in the video -- which included riding in a red Ferrari, swinging blinged-out chains around his neck and wooing adult women in tight clothing -- "an orgy of outrageous behavior" and demanded to know, "who is looking out for this boy?"
But one of the behaviors, in particular, that the paper took exception to? "Me smacking a girl's behind," Poopy said.
But his father defended his son's antics in the video, saying it was just "entertainment."
"He was just acting," Rivera said. "Just like any other Hollywood kid would do. They entertain people."
But the video didn't just set off The Brockton Enterprise. The clip, which was pulled from YouTube, led the Brockton police to take action.
"Our officers felt it appropriate to refer this matter to the Department of Children and Families," Brockton Lt. Paul Bonanca told ABC News.
The police's complaint, known as a 51-A, kickstarted and a state Department of Children and Families investigation into the Riveras, which infuriated the family's lawyer, Joseph Krowski.
"The standard for a 51-A investigation is there has to be an imminent risk of significant and substantial physical or emotional injury to the child -- an absolutely outrageous claim under these circumstances," Krowski said. "This is a good kid. This is almost a spoof on adult rap videos."
Nevertheless, if he had to do it all over again, Rivera said he would still let his son do the provocative video.
"I wouldn't change anything," he said.
Yet, Lil' Poopy's mother Jatoy Rivera, who no longer lives with Poopy's father, admitted that her son had gone too far with this latest video.
"I would have told him not to do it," Jatoy Rivera said.
Poopy and his peeps insist the video was just acting, all pretend, boasting for effect in the hip-hop tradition, and that in real-life Poopy is just a normal kid, who plays sports with his friends and rides ATVs with his father. His family said he is looked after with parental love and care and is doing well in school.
"If I didn't go to school, there wouldn't be no rapping because school comes before rapping," Poopy said.
But how can school compete when you are making a reported $7,500 per show with Grade-A flow and charisma, while attracting attention from hip-hop's elite? When asked what it was like to meet Diddy, Poopy said, "Pretty ill, because I don't think anybody at 9 years old has met P. Diddy before."
And Nicki Minaj? "It looked like everything was real," he said.
The controversy surrounding Lil' Poopy seemed to have died down until one night in May. Family friend and videographer Brian Slay said it was after midnight when he was driving Poopy home after a long evening at a recording studio and a cop pulled them over.
"And he goes, 'Lil' Poopy's out at 1 in the morning, driving around with someone who is under the influence of drugs,'" Slay said. "I said, 'No, that's not true.' And he yells, 'You're high. Child services ought to love this one.'"
Police searched the car but found no trace of marijuana, but the traffic stop led cops to submit another 51-A complaint, which started a new child services inquiry.
"It's just like they've got something against us," Rivera said.
When asked if he was worried about child services taking his son away, Rivera said, "For what? We didn't do nothing illegal."
But since his ABC News interview, according to police, he did do something illegal. Police arrested Rivera last Wednesday on a outstanding battery warrant and for possession of marijuana, which set off a chorus of new criticism of his ability to care for his son. His lawyer said the arrest was simply police harassment.
Rivera asserts he was cleared of all neglect and abuse allegations in both Department of Children and Families investigations.
He is scheduled to appear in court Wednesday.
But even before his arrest, Poopy's father wasn't all defiance. He admitted his son would not be allowed to stay out that late with Slay anymore.
"If he's with me, he can be out as long as he wants, but somebody else? No, he's not allowed," Rivera said.
He also admitted that he has no music business expertise and his hoping to someday hire a manager and a publicist to take over the reins.
"I love my son," Rivera said. "I love him to death."