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Rap Artist Akon Faces Criminal Charges Stemming from Concert Incident


Akon faces criminal charges after flinging a teenager into a concert crowd, allegedly causing a spectator to suffer a concussion.

Police said on November 29 that the hip-hop star is scheduled to appear in Fishkill, New York Town Court on December 3. He will be arraigned on a misdemeanor charge of endangering the welfare of a minor and second degree harassment, a violation, according to a news release from Police Chief Donald Williams.

During Akon's June 3 concert in Fishkill's Dutchess Stadium, an audience member allegedly threw an object at Akon, after which the singer asked the crowd to point out the culprit. A security guard picked out a 15-year-old and sent him up on stage, where Akon hoisted him on his shoulders and flung him into the crowd.

The boy landed on Abby Rosa, who told the Poughkeepsie Journal she later was found to have a concussion. She said she has hired a lawyer and spoken to Fishkill police. Akon's Manhattan lawyer, Benjamin Brafman, released a statement a few days after the concert saying there was no basis for criminal charges.

A November 29 call to his office was not immediately returned.

Akon later claimed the incident was staged to publicize his next record.

In April, the Senegalese-American singer drew fire for simulating onstage sex with a 14-year-old girl during a performance in Trinidad. He later apologized, saying he was unaware that the girl was underage. The incident led the Verizon telecommunications company to withdraw its sponsorship of Akon's tour with Gwen Stefani.

Akon's latest album, Konvicted, has sold more than one million copies in the United States. On November 18, he won an American Music Award for favorite male soul/rhythm and blues artist.

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