March 29, 2009

Amateur rapper accused of brandishing gun

An amateur rapper pulled a handgun on a crowd of nearly 100 people at the University of South Florida following a talent show, police allege.

Police said 26-year-old David Joseph Thornton allegedly brandished a loaded .357 Magnum outside of Russell M. Cooper Hall at the Tampa, Fla., university, The St. Petersburg (Fla.) Times reported Friday.

USF junior Morgan Byron said Thursday's incident occurred after Thornton, who is not a student at the university, was booed off stage during a rap performance at the Phi Beta Sigma fraternity's Blu Pollo talent show.

After his on-stage embarrassment, Thornton refused to leave the auditorium and began smoking indoors, Byron alleged.

The Times said the firearm incident occurred after event organizers had all audience members leave the auditorium. Thornton is now facing charges of improper display of a firearm, possession of a firearm on school property, grand theft of a firearm, carrying a concealed weapon and aggravated assault.