Ice Cube gets apology from police over rapist alert
July 23, 2003
BY ANA MENDIETA Staff Reporter Advertisement
Actor/rapper Ice Cube, in Chicago to film the sequel to the hit film "Barbershop," was drawn into controversy when a police community alert said a suspect in a series of Wicker Park assaults resembled him.
The alert, issued Monday, referred to a suspect who had been involved in three recent sexual assaults, police said. It "inadvertently mentioned that the offender bore a resemblance to Ice Cube, a well-known musician and actor,'' according to a release issued by the Chicago Police Department Tuesday night to retract the original community alert.
Matt Labov, publicist for Ice Cube in Los Angeles, said representatives of the entertainer learned of the alert Tuesday morning and were in touch with police officials all day. Labov said he received a written apology from the Chicago Police Department at 9:30 p.m., and another apology from WBBM-Channel 2, which aired video of Ice Cube Monday in reporting the alert.
"When we recognized the error we took immediate action to retract the alert and issued a new one,'' said police spokesman Dave Bayless. "The only thing that matters is that we acknowledged the mistake was made and we fixed it immediately. We considered it an honest mistake and we meant no ill will whatsoever against Ice Cube."
Representatives for the entertainer called the incident "an unfortunate and hurtful situation for Ice Cube."
Elizabeth Shapiro, director of communications for WBBM-Channel 2, said the station reported the story based on information provided by police and added: "We apologize for the misunderstanding." -----
This kind of thing happens all the time, although usually to people who do not have the resources of an Ice Cube. And in a state that ceased the death penalty because the could no longer be confident they were executing the right people:
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The indecency rules are so ambiguous, and people are so gun shy, it's not a huge surprise. Of course, groups like the PTC (parentstv.org) are saying that they won't complain and "context is everything".