Roc Nation rapper, singer, and songwriter Vic Mensa has been on a positive hot streak lately, but a recent guilty plea has disrupted it just a bit. The 29-year-old was arrested back in January at Virginia’s Dulles International Airport after a U.S. Custom Official discovered 41 grams of liquid LSD, 124 grams of psilocybin capsules, and 178 grams of psilocybin gummies, and six grams of psilocybin mushrooms on his person.
According to HipHopDX, Mensa was traveling back from a week-long trip to Ghana, West Africa, when he was detained and then promptly released from jail shortly after being arrested. With a felony narcotics possession charge hanging over his head, things luckily went his way on Monday, June 27, and he won’t have to worry about iron bars getting in the way of his good blessings.
Kendra Glover, a rep for the Loudoun County Commonwealth’s Attorney, informed TMZ that Mensa pled guilty to one count of possession of a Schedule III controlled substance, which is a Class 1 misdemeanor and, as part of a plea deal, had his sentence suspended and will have to undergo 12 months of probation. He will also have to perform 25 hours of community service, take a substance abuse assessment, and pay a $1,000 fine. Mensa will receive a 50 percent cut from his fine if the terms of his probation are met.
“In this case, I have decided to plead guilty to a misdemeanor charge,” Mensa told TMZ. “I have been extremely vocal about my mental health, the culture at large, and access to mental health treatment. It is important to note the extensive research being done on the topic of psilocybin [shrooms] and the many significant movements underway for legalization and decriminalization.”
He continued, “Esteemed universities such as Johns Hopkins, University of California, NYU, Mount Sinai School of Medicine, and The Imperial College of London have all immersed themselves in years-long research programs with full departments and centers dedicated to this work. Unfortunately, our laws have not kept up with the research showing that psychedelic plants and compounds can be successfully used to treat otherwise treatment-resistant mental illness.
“I have contributed positively to many communities and will continue to do so with this case. My hope is that the silver lining to this matter will be increased focus on the effectiveness of psychedelics to treat mental illness and mood disorders that millions are battling with depression and anxiety with the hope that all of our laws will change accordingly.”
With this situation behind him, the goal looks to be an interesting summer rollout for the Chicago punk-rap performer. As founder of the hip hop collective Savemoney, which includes Chance the Rapper and Joey Purp, the multi-hyphenate just partnered with one of Chicago’s leading art galleries to host an art show in the West Loop.
Skin and Masks, which is now open at the Kavi Gupta Gallery (219 N. Elizabeth Street), was inspired by Frantz Fanon’s Black Skin, White Masks, and will run through Aug. 13.
For more information, visit https://kavigupta.com.