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More Troubles for Slick Rick

Incarcerated rapper’s family harassed by imposter

Having spent almost a year and a half in a Florida jail awaiting
possible deportation, “Slick Rick” Walters would gladly trade shoes
with just about anyone willing. Unfortunately for the rapper, the
North Carolina man who has illegally assumed his identity has
managed to dodge incarceration. Twenty-nine-year-old Steven Glenn
has co-opted Walters’ name, committing mail and identity fraud and
stalking Walters’ wife.

Walters’ plight dates back to a 1991 conviction for attempted
murder in the second degree, for which he stretched two-and-a-half
years. “The crime he committed was anomalous in his life,” says a
source close to Walters. “He just chose the wrong way to defend
himself.” Five months after his discharge into a work-release
program, Walters, 38, was arrested again as the Immigration and
Naturalization Service had begun deportation proceedings in
accordance to the law which requires such for foreign nationals who
commit crimes in the U.S.

Walters’ property ownership, family in the States, charity work
and other factors earned him a waiver from the law, however, and he
dodged deportation and he was released in January 1996.

Walters went about resuming his recording career, releasing a
strong album, The Art of Storytelling in 1999. But in June
2002 — after a post-9/11 immigration crackdown — INS again
targeted Walters, arresting him again after returning to the U.S.
from a vacation and charging him with illegally re-entering the
country. Last December, his deportation was blocked, but despite
his ties and connections in the country, he was considered a flight
risk and denied bail. Walters has been locked up in Bradenton,
Florida, since then, as U.S. District Court Judge Kimba Wood
continues to slowly ponder his case. “I am grateful that the judge
stopped my deportation in December, and I totally understand that
homeland security is going through changes and the judge has a
heavy caseload,” Walters says. “But I’m disappointed and saddened
that I can’t get an answer to how much longer.”

While Walters has been locked up in Florida, Glenn assumed his
persona, allegedly renting cars under his name, calling Walters’
wife collect and having his mail forwarded. In April he was
arrested and charged with seven counts of fraud. Glenn underwent a
psychiatric examination and was ultimately released and the charges
against him were dropped.

“When he called me pretending to be Rick, it was just
heart-wrenching,” Walters’ wife Mandy Aragones says. “But mostly I
feel sorry for Rick, he feels helpless in there. It’s really sad
the way the system works. In some ways, though, it’s been so
surreal it seems like it’s not happening to us.”

On October 23rd, Glenn appeared outside Aragones’ home in the
Bronx. She called the police and Glenn was arrested. At press time
he was in the care of Our Lady of Mercy Medical Center, which
confirmed his presence there, but could offer no further comment.
No charges have been filed against Glenn in New York, and a Bronx
Criminal Court denied Aragones’ request for a restraining order,
claiming that there wasn’t enough evidence to prove that Glenn is a
threat.

“He’s free and I’m still in jail,” Walters says. “It’s abusive
and an injustice.”

Meanwhile, Walters continues to wait in Florida for word of his
release or deportation. Next month marks the eighteenth month he
has been incarcerated. And he says he’s trying to make the best of
the situation. “Physically I’m in great condition,” he says. “I’ve
trimmed down some so I feel more youthful. Mentally I’m OK and have
great faith. My life and future are in someone else’s hands right
now: physically, Judge Kimba Wood, and spiritually God. I have a
great support system and do not stand alone right now.”

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