The chart-topping 22-year-old rapper YoungBoy Never Broke Again, born Kentrell D. Gaulden, was found not guilty on Friday of possessing a firearm and ammunition as a felon, concluding one of the two federal gun trials he had been facing.
A jury in Los Angeles reached its verdict after about two hours on its second day of deliberations. Mr. Gaulden, who is known to fans as NBA YoungBoy or YB, faced up to 10 years in prison in the case.
The gun possession charge in California stemmed from YoungBoy’s March 2021 arrest in the Los Angeles area on a separate federal gun possession warrant from an earlier incident in the rapper’s home state of Louisiana. In September 2020, YoungBoy was among 16 people accused of possessing guns and drugs at a video shoot in Baton Rouge. His lawyers have said none of the contraband was in his possession.
Prosecutors in the Central District of California said that upon attempting to execute the warrant in that case, YoungBoy initially seemed to cooperate, pulling over his Mercedes Maybach before taking off again and leading officers on a “high-speed chase.” After the rapper fled on foot, police found a FNX .45 caliber pistol and ammunition behind the front passenger’s seat, along with cash and jewelry.
Lawyers for YoungBoy argued that the rapper was unaware of his outstanding federal warrant at the time and panicked when armed officers approached his vehicle, leading him to take off. He did not know the weapon was in the car, they said, and no usable fingerprints or DNA tied YoungBoy to the gun.