UPDATED: Cardi B on Monday did not attend a court hearing over misdemeanor charges against her stemming from a fight in a New York strip club last summer, and received a warning from the judge.
“I want you to convey to her that it’s not acceptable that she’s not here today,” Queens Criminal Court Judge Sean Dunn told Jeff Kern, the rapper’s attorney, offering a new date of Friday, according to the New York Post and TMZ. “You should inform her that if she doesn’t show up, that unless circumstances change, it’s very likely that the court will issue a bench warrant for her arrest.”
Kern responded, “As you probably know she is a fairly notable hip-hop artist. My client knew the date but there was a previously scheduled commitment for today and tomorrow.”
The prosecuting lawyer, Queens Assistant District Attorney Ryan Nicolosi, asked for a bench warrant to be issued immediately, but the judge decided to leave it at a warning.
“Thank you, your honor. Message received loud and clear,” Kern responded.
After the hearing, Kern told the Post that Cardi’s previously scheduled commitment was “entertainment related,” although it was not immediately clear what that commitment was.
“You all need to understand this is not about her saying, ‘Screw going to court. I got things to do. I’m important.’ She has managers, she has business people, she has things scheduled. So it’s not like we can just say, ‘Hey you got to come to court on Monday,’” Kern said outside the court.
Reached by Variety early Monday afternoon, Kern said he did not know specifically what the rapper’s commitment was and referred to the above comments, and when asked whether the rapper will presumably be in court for the rescheduled hearing on Friday,he said, “‘Presumably’ is the right word.”
However, when it was noted that the new court date is the same morning that the Grammy nominations are announced — Cardi is widely expected to be nominated for at least one award and likely more — he joked, “Maybe we’ll announce them in open court. I’m gonna bring the judge in on that: ‘Judge, you have a very rare opportunity,'” he laughed.
She performed with husband Offset at iHeartRadio’s Jingle Ball in Los Angeles on Friday and is scheduled to appear at the New York Jingle Ball on Dec. 7, but no further tour dates before that one are listed on her itinerary.
Cardi was charged in October with two misdemeanors for allegedly ordering an attack on two bartenders, sisters Jade and Baddie Gi, at Angels Strip Club in the New York City borough of Queens on August 29. The women were reportedly injured but declined medical treatment.