Misc. Reviews

If it's kinda, sorta music-related, we'll review it. This week: Mack Minister on America's Most Wanted.

Andre "Mack Minister" Dow appeared on America's Most Wanted for under 30 seconds in February (the clip is viewable on YouTube's Web site at www.youtube.com). But it was enough to get the minorly known Bay Area rapper arrested on March 2 in a SOMA residence by the FBI. He was nailed for "unlawful flight to avoid prosecution," according to AllHipHop.com.

More specifically, Dow was wanted for fleeing from Las Vegas, where he had been indicted for two counts each of murder and conspiracy to commit murder in the deaths of Anthony "Fat Tone" Watkins and his companion, Jermaine "Cowboy" Akins — a case allegedly related to the 2004 shooting death of popular Vallejo rapper Andre "Mac Dre" Hicks. Dow's arrest may eventually bring more insight into the murder of Mac Dre — but the real story here is more complicated and much more grim.

The swiftness of Dow's arrest after the AMW airing gives an illusion of hope that Mac Dre's killer will be brought to justice. However, the streets have been buzzing for some time that Watkins and Akins were not the perpetrators, yet no alternative names have come up. This is illustrative of the large wall of silence that surrounds murders in the hip hop community — that same heavy cloak that has prevented the people who killed Tupac and Biggie from having their days in court despite what have appeared to be promising advances in each of these cases over the years (including, with Tupac, the dismissal of key suspects, and a wrongful death lawsuit against the LAPD related to Biggie). It's painful to say, but Mac Dre's killer may never be found. Worse still, we may yet see it all dramatized on a future episode of Unsolved Mysteries thanks to a code of "honor" that prevents hip hop stars' murderers from being brought to justice.

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