Hip-hop fans in New York and around the country probably know Keith Cozart better by his stage name Chief Keef. The 21-year-old rapper burst onto the music scene in 2011 and has since released several highly acclaimed mixtapes and studio albums, but he has also had his share of trouble with the law. Cozart was taken into custody by police in California in January after he allegedly assaulted a music producer in his home, and he provided gossip columnists with more headlines on April 8 when he was charged with driving under the influence of drugs in Florida.
According to a Miami Beach Police Department report, Cozart was approached by officers after the passenger in the vehicle he was driving appeared to take part in a drug transaction. Reports suggest that Cozart had been using the bright green sports car throughout the day to record a music video. Police say that they observed Cozart’s passenger exit the vehicle and hand a bag of what was described as a green leafy substance to the occupants of a second vehicle.
Officers say that Cozart showed signs of intoxication including watery and bloodshot eyes, and media reports indicate that a search of the car uncovered a cup of a narcotic cough syrup and soda mixture known as sizzurp or lean. It was not immediately clear if subsequent toxicology tests revealed the presence of drugs or alcohol in Cozart’s system.
Blood or breath test results are usually key pieces of evidence in drunk driving cases, but experienced criminal defense attorneys could argue that they may not be enough to establish impairment in all situations where drug use is suspected. Illegal drugs affect the body differently to alcohol, and traces of them can sometimes be detected in blood samples days or weeks after they have been consumed.