The Harris County District Attorney's office dismissed an ongoing assault case against Rap-A-Lot Records CEO James Prince today. Prince was originally indicted in November of 2007 [click to read] for allegedly beating Ronnie Bookman, the CEO of Houston-based label 7303 Records.
Bookman claimed Prince orchestrated an attack on him after he failed to provide discounted or free sessions at a recording studio owned by Bookman. The original suit alleges the studio time was to be provided in exchange for a Bun B feature on an album by 7303 Records' artist JV. Bookman went on to claim that Prince, who manages Bun B as a solo artist, refused to clear Bun B's appearance after Warner Bros. showed interest in possibly distributing 7303 Records. Should the case have gone to trial, Prince faced charges of breach of contract, battery, unfair competition, duress, conspiracy and unjust enrichment.
In a written statement released today Prince proclaimed his innocence, as he has from day one.
"I've said from the beginning that I had nothing to do with the beating of Ronnie Bookman and today I've been cleared," says Prince. "These charges should never have been filed, but after the prosecutors looked at what kind of man Ronnie Bookman really is, the case went away."
With the case dropped this will likely mean the end of Bookman's $10 million lawsuit against Prince. The lawsuit was initiated shortly after he filed a restraining order against Prince in April of 2007. Rap-A-Lot records will release the ABN album It Is What It Is on July 15, and albums by Z Ro, Kinfolk Thugs and Scarface are expected to follow.