Snoop Dogg narrowly avoided becoming another drive-by rap casualty Thursday night, as his motorcade was ambushed in a hail of bullets.
Snoop and his posse were caravaning down Los Angeles' Fairfax Avenue when a car pulled alongside their five-vehicle convoy and began unloading rounds. Two of Snoop's cars were hit, and while Snoop escaped unharmed, the rapper's bodyguard took a bullet to the back, Los Angeles police confirmed Friday. The wound was not life-threatening, however.
The bodyguard, an off-duty Inglewood Unified School District officer whose identity was not released, was taken to a nearby hospital, treated and released early Friday morning.
According to a police spokesman, one of the assailants tried to talk to Snoop before the attack. Although Snoop and several of his entourage were detained for questioning, police did not immediately disclose what was said, only that the exchange became heated and was punctuated by gunfire from the three men in the car.
The rap star's posse included seven bodyguards, five from the Inglewood school district and two state parole officers. Police say no charges will be filed against the 31-year-old Snoop and his pals.
No arrests have been made in conjunction with the attack. Police did stop three men in a car near the scene, took them into custody and questioned them, but they were later released without being charged.
Snoop's camp issued a "no comment" on the attack.
In 1996, Snoop, whose real name is Calvin Broadus, and bodyguard McKinley Lee were acquitted of the 1993 shooting death of a gang member in a Los Angeles-area park. Snoop and Lee testified during their trial that they opened up on Philip Woldermariam in self-defense.
Snoop made headlines last month when he was sued by a man, identified only as "John Doe," who claimed the rapper illicitly used a private phone message left by Mr. Doe in the track "Pimp Slapp'd." Doe says that by releasing the message--which dissed the rapper's ex-boss and nemesis, hip-hop kingpin Marion "Suge" Knight--the man's life has been endangered.
Snoop Dogg acrimoniously split from Knight's Death Row Records in January of 1998. Snoop said he feared for his life and didn't want to become a hip-hop statistic like his good friend Tupac Shakur, killed in a 1996 drive-by, or the Notorious B.I.G., who was gunned down six years ago, just a mile from the site of Thursday night's attack.
Lately, Snoop has become something of a family man, spending more time with his wife and two kids and trying to clean up his pot-smoking gangsta image.