Former Hot Boy rapper Tab “Turk” Virgil Jr. will be released from prison in the coming months and according to the rapper, he is going to take full advantage of his freedom.
Turk, an original member of the hit group The Hot Boys – which featured Lil’ Wayne, Juvenile and B.G., was sentenced to 12 years in prison in 2006, for his role in a 2004 shooting in a Memphis, Tennessee apartment that left several members of a local S.W.A.T. team with serious injuries.
The rapper went on trial in the controversial shooting, alleging that plain clothes officers raided the apartment, but never identified themselves as officers.
He was eventually convicted of being a felon, a drug addict and a fugitive in possession of a handgun.
Speaking to AllHipHop.com exclusively from prison, Turk revealed that since he has been incarcerated since 2004, he has served 30 percent of his prison time and is due to be released as early as November.
“I got the word last week on my parole. It’s final, I gotta do a drug program and once I complete that I’m home,” Turk told AllHipHop.com. “I was sentenced to 10 years at 30%. I’m passed my red date. I been down 3 years and 6 months.”
Turk maintained his innocence and denied being in a closet or firing the 9mm handgun that left officer Chris Harris with gunshot wounds to the jaw, hip and leg.
“He was initially sentenced to 12 years, that was reduced to 10 years. We ended up having a series of battles in court,” Turk’s trial attorney Javier Bailey told AllHipHop.com. “The 12 years was supposed to be concurrent, but they tried to stack charges. Because a police officer was involved, they tried to charge him both federal and state courts. What ended up happening, was after we went to trial on gun possession charges in federal court, the jury came back [and] we worked out a deal with the state to run their charges with the federal charges concurrently. They agreed to it, but then they reneged. Finally what ended up happening was he came up to the parole board relatively quickly considering his sentence. The hearing officer agreed that Turk should be released, which they accepted.”
According to Bailey, of Memphis-based Walter Bailey Law Firm, like officer Harris, Turk was lucky to be alive, considering the amount of rounds that S.W.A.T. Team officers fired into a small, Memphis apartment, allegedly in search of drugs, which were never found.
“There were 189 bullet holes in this small two bedroom apartment,” Bailey told AllHipHop.com. “The place looked like swiss cheese. These officers shot that place up and Turk didn’t get hit once. It was like divine intervention.”
Turk explained that he put his time behind prison to good use, reflecting on his past, while at the same time making plans to resume his recording career.
“I have seven full albums done telling my story that I wrote while I been locked up,” Turk told AllHipHop.com.,” Turk told AllHipHop.com.
The rapper also confirmed talks are still underway for a highly anticipated reunion album from The Hot Boys, all of whom have maintained very successful careers since the group disbanded in 2001.
“I’ve been hollering at Wayne, B.G. and we are definitely talking about a Hot Boy reunion,” Turk said. “You know I have very good relationships with everyone. I don’t have beef with anyone in the industry, and when I get out, I really want to work with everyone.”
In addition to his album, Turk is focused on his business ventures as well, as he heads up the label YNT (Yung-N-Thuggin’) Music.
“My first artist is Emani Da Made Woman,” Turk told AllHipHop.com. “I’m pushing her, she got a single that’s hitting really big in Memphis right now titled “Like A N**a.”
Emani Da Made Woman was also present when officers raided the apartment.
“The police kicked in my door, bullets was flying everywhere, I thought Turk was dead and I was next, I thought it was over,” Emani said. “We made it…so I got to hold it down, and make this money, we both got a second chance and Ill die before I lose it.”
Turk, who also fought a well documented addiction to heroin, is clean and has been so since 2004.
Still, the rapper is going through 500 hours of drug counseling.
“He’s going through a drug prevention program that he voluntarily asked for,” Bailey told AllHipHop.com. “If you see him now, you wouldn’t know him. He has been clean since 2004, but his drug of choice was heroin, so he asked that he be allowed to complete this drug program. It’s a 500 hour program, but that doesn’t prevent him to moving on with his life.”