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Rapper Benzino cites bitter family feud in shooting

Raymond Scott had planned to skip his mother’s funeral Saturday, hoping to avoid trouble stemming from a festering family feud. But trouble found him anyway.

Scott, a rapper and reality television personality also known by his stage name Benzino, said he was driving south on Route 3 to meet a friend in Plymouth when he happened upon his mother’s procession.

“I looked over, there was a car, and all I saw was a gun shooting at me,” Scott said in a phone interview from his hospital bed. The assailant, he said, fired seven or eight shots.

“I was trying to duck and dodge, drive around it, maneuver the car. . . . I was bleeding a lot. I was driving with my thumb in my shoulder to try to stop the bleeding.”


Scott, a Boston native, is a cast member of the VH1 reality show ‘‘Love & Hip Hop: Atlanta’’ and chief executive of Hip-Hop Weekly.

The Plymouth district attorney’s office has said that Scott was shot twice by his nephew, Gai Scott, as the two drove through Duxbury.

Christopher Coughlin, who is Gai Scott’s attorney, said his client would plead not guilty to the charge of armed assault with intent to murder. Coughlin declined to comment further, citing attorney-client privilege; but he indicated that defense attorneys may dispute Raymond Scott’s account of the incident.

Coughlin said Maureen Scott, Gai Scott’s mother and Raymond Scott’s sister, was struggling after losing her mother and having her son arrested. “It’s an incredibly difficult time for her,” he said.

After being shot in the upper arm and back, Raymond Scott said he stopped the car, got out, and ran away. A moment later, another relative driving in the procession stopped to pick him up, then brought him to the Duxbury Police station.

Because of a bitter family fight over money and the care of his mother, Mary, Scott said he decided not to attend the funeral. Instead, he said, he mourned her privately earlier Saturday at the funeral home where the wake was held.


“I didn’t want to be around them,” Scott said. “I felt like, I didn’t want any problems. I can love my mother and there doesn’t have to be any problems with family.”

Scott would not specifically name Gai Scott as his attacker, saying he preferred to let law enforcement handle the matter. Prosecutors said Sunday they expect Gai Scott to be arraigned Monday in Plymouth District Court.

Raymond “Benzino” Scott is perhaps best known as the former co-owner of The Source, once a widely read and influential hip-hop magazine. But his celebrity has also been marked by a series of lawsuits and brushes with the law.

Scott left The Source in 2006 amid a swirl of controversy that included a multimillion lawsuit by former editor in chief Kimberly Osorio alleging harassment and discrimination, according to news reports at the time.

A song Scott wrote in the early 1990s drew the ire of the Boston police union, which said his song “One in the Chamba” advocated violence against police, according to Globe reports from the time.

In 1999, the Globe reported that Scott sued Braintree police officers and number of others for civil rights violations and slander after being detained on suspicion of using a stolen credit card at a Macy’s store. He lost. In 2001, he publicly accused a Miami Beach police officer who had arrested him for speeding in his Ferrari of racism and brutality, according to news reports. Court records show he also spent several years embroiled in a federal tax case, before a jury found him not guilty in 2007.


As he recovered Sunday, Scott thanked Duxbury firefighters, whom he credited with saving his life.

“Those guys were super, super nice and helpful,” he said. “I was in pain, and they were trying to keep me calm.”

Martin Leppo, Scott’s lawyer, said he expected Scott to be discharged from South Shore Hospital on Monday.

Scott said he was stunned that the family feud escalated to the point of violence, saying he had given thousands of dollars to the relatives involved. “Money, jealousy, and envy” destroy family relationships, he said.

“You hear about these things, but you never think it could happen to you. At the end of the day, my mom was in my corner,” he said.

Scott resides in Atlanta; he said he left Boston in part because of unfair treatment in the media.

“Boston hasn’t always been so kind to me,” he said. “I’ve been getting hammered by the press here.”

But, he said, he still has affection for the city and hoped Bostonians would not judge him for Saturday’s incident.

“What happened yesterday, that doesn’t represent me,” he said.

Dan Adams can be reached at dadams@globe.com. Find him on Twitter at @DanielAdams86.