Miami Police Chief John Timoney denies that his detectives have followed or photographed rappers, reports the Miami Herald. He acknowledged that his officers traveled to New York for a training seminar about the hip-hop industry and cops received a binder with the criminal records and photos of rappers. Timoney said his officers have not photographed rappers as they arrived at Miami International Airport, secretly watched them or compiled files on them, as the Herald reported.
The Herald quoted Miami and Miami Beach officers as saying that part of their job is to keep tabs on hip-hop stars and their followers to protect them and the public in light of violent incidents that have left some well-known rappers dead.
A Miami detective told the Herald that “we shared databases with New York” and he “went to a couple of video shoots,” including a recent one on Key Biscayne featuring 50 Cent. He showed The Herald a police document listing the alleged gang affiliations of hip-hop artists. “There is always beef between rappers,” he told The Herald. Another detective said city officers “go to some of the concerts for intelligence gathering and that.”
Timoney said The Herald photographed Rosario holding a copy of a hip-hop magazine, The Source, which belonged to the newspaper. From the Herald article, Timoney said, “you would assume that the Miami police department has been profiling, watching rap artists meeting them at airports, surveilling them, taking pictures, going to their hotel rooms and doing all sorts of covert surveillances. Not only is it not true, I would never allow such a thing to happen and it has not happened.”