PITTSBURGH – An amateur teenage rapper who successfully sued his school district after he was expelled for writing rap songs with violent imagery has settled his lawsuit against two Pennsylvania townships over charges police filed against him.
Anthony Latour, of Ellwood City, Pennsylvania, and his parents reached a $60,000 settlement of their lawsuit against North Sewickley and Franklin townships on Thursday, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette newspaper reported.
Latour was expelled last year from the Riverside Beaver County School District after parents of other students complained that his rap lyrics contained threats. Police charged him making terroristic threats and other counts, but the charges were later dismissed.
A federal judge overturned the expulsion in August 2005, finding that the songs contained images of violence, but did not amount to true threats against the school.
Latour reached a $90,000 settlement of his lawsuit against the school district last November.
Out of the latest settlement, Latour will get $25,000, which will be put into a bank account until he turns 18 in 2009. His parents will get $15,000 to recover legal fees they spent for a criminal defense lawyer and $20,000 will pay for attorney fees in the civil case.
His attorney, Francis Moore, said he hopes Latour uses the money for college.
Latour was led out of his middle school in handcuffs in April 2005 and spent time in a juvenile detention facility when he was first arrested on the matter, Moore said.
"It was a brief encounter, but it really had long-term effects for him," he said. "This all would have been resolved if they simply would have called the boy in and interviewed him."