LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) – Rapper Snoop Dogg expressed joy upon learning that a co-founder of Death Row Records had his sentence for drug trafficking commuted by President Donald Trump.
59-year-old Michael "Harry-O" Harris was released from a federal prison in Lompoc Wednesday after serving more than three decades behind bars for attempted murder and drug trafficking.
"I love what they did," Snoop Dogg said in remarks reported by the New York Post Tuesday. "That's great work for the president and his team on the way out."
Harris was convicted in 1988 of the attempted murder of a Cook County, Illinois Department of Corrections police officer in October 1987. The filings stated the officer was shot in the face, hit on the head and robbed at gunpoint of her shoulder bag, two rings and her badge.
The victim later identified Harris from a lineup as the person who attacked her.
Harris was released from state custody in October 2011 after the officer recanted and Harris was transferred to federal prison to begin serving a nearly 20-year federal sentence for a November 1990 drug trafficking conviction. He wasn't slated to be released until 2028.
"Mr. Harris' federal prison sentence for involvement with drugs was unduly harsh," Harris' attorney Bruce Zucker said in a statement following his release. "It occurred during the 1980s, at a time when then Presidents Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush authorized legislation that imposed draconian penalties for drug offenses, which primarily and adversely affected young African American men living in the inner-city, such as Mr. Harris. I believe Mr. Harris should have been released from prison years ago, like other similarly situated folks were. This commutation is more than equitable, and it is long overdue."
Snoop Dogg, who was an artist on the Death Row Records label, had allegedly been petitioning the White House for a commutation on Harris' behalf.
According to the website of the now defunct Death Row Records, Solar Records CEO Dick Griffey and Harris "helped provide support and guidance as the label transitioned from Future Shock to Death Row Records."
Meanwhile, in October of 2018, Death Row Records co-founder Marion "Suge" Knight was sentenced to 28 years in state prison for running a man down and killing him with a pickup truck in the parking lot of a Compton hamburger stand in 2015.
Harris was among 70 people to have their sentences commuted by Trump, who also pardoned 73 other people on Wednesday prior to leaving office.
(© Copyright 2020 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. City News Service contributed to this report.)
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