A man who has been stalking and harassing Ashanti for nearly 10 years has, after three bizarre trials, finally been convicted of felony stalking.
According to the New York Daily News, prosecutors proved that Devar Hurd, a 37-year-old who reportedly harbors delusions that he was in a relationship with Ashanti, was at a string of events attended by Ashanti’s sister and that he tweeted at the singer hundreds of times. Hurd has a prior 2009 conviction for stalking Ashanti’s mom, Tina Douglas, whom he sent a photo of his erect penis; this is the third trial in connection with the current case, following a mistrial and a second trial that ended with a hung jury (Hurd was convicted on nine counts in the latter, but the jury didn’t come to a decision on the top count, felony stalking).
Hurd was somehow allowed to serve as his own legal council, giving him the opportunity to personally grill the object of his obsession (whom he asked, “You do lap dances for your performances, correct?”). Over the course of the trial, Hurd has also read back many of the gross tweets he sent her, said things like “I just talked some sexually explicit stuff from time to time” and compared himself to Anthony Weiner, asking why no one “ran down on him and arrested him.” It was not a winning strategy.
“You continuously tweeted over and over again disgusting, derogatory things to me,” Ashanti told her stalker as he cross-examined her, according to Page Six. “I just wish you would stop.” She told the prosecutor, “I was afraid of what he was capable of.”
Hurd faces up to four years in prison, but has already served three in connection to the case; he rejected a plea deal that would have given him time served. He will be sentenced on March 31.
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