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Bus ride detours Rapper T.I.'s early release from prison

By Alan Duke, CNN
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • NEW: T.I "never (had) any intent or reason to mislead" officials about his bus, his lawyer says
  • The federal inmate locator shows T.I. is in an Atlanta prison Friday
  • Rapper T.I. was released from a federal prison in Arkansas on Wednesday
  • On Thursday, his attorney says officials have moved him to a "different facility"
  • This is being done as officials probe his using a tour bus, the lawyer says

(CNN) -- T.I., who walked out of a federal prison in Arkansas Wednesday and joyously tweeted "The storm is over & da sun back out," woke up back in a prison Friday morning.

The rapper's early release from an 11-month prison term lasted just a day, with federal agents taking T.I. back into custody Thursday after prison officials questioned how he traveled from an Arkansas prison to an Atlanta halfway house.

T.I., whose real name is Clifford Harris, was locked up behind the high walls of the U.S. Penitentiary in Atlanta Friday, according information posted in the Bureau of Prison's online inmate locator.

The popular hip-hop artist had walked out of the Federal Correctional Center in Forrest City, Arkansas, on Wednesday morning, 10 months after he began serving a sentence for violating his parole on a gun conviction. He had been expected to complete the last weeks of his sentence in a community service center, or halfway house, in Atlanta.

Federal prison officials apparently objected to his using a tour bus to travel from Arkansas to Georgia, Sadow said. T.I. had agreed to provide his own transportation between the two locales, but officials are reviewing if riding in the tour bus, escorted by several private SUVs, violated his furlough agreement, according to Sadow.

His criminal defense lawyer Steve Sadow told CNN "we are confident there was never any intent or reason to mislead or misstate the method of transportation."

"T.I. got on the bus in full view of BOP employees," Sadow said. "If there was some confusion or misunderstanding surrounding the method of transportation, we hope to clear it up quickly so T.I. can return to the halfway house."

The rapper was jubilant in Twitter postings immediately after he walked from the prison Wednesday morning.

"The storm is over & da sun back out. IT'S OUR TIME TO SHINE SHAWTY!!!!! Welcome to the beginning of our Happy Ending!!!!" he tweeted.

He also immediately began taping a new reality TV show as he boarded his bus, a series that cable channel VH-1 announced just hours after his release.

The as yet-untitled 10-episode series, which will premiere in December, will show T.I. "as he re-adjusts to life as a free man after being incarcerated for nearly a year in a federal prison in Arkansas," VH-1 said.

"Viewers will get a behind-the-scenes look at the most private and personal moments of one of today's hottest, most sought after Grammy winning artists as he is reunited with his wife and kids and thrust back into society at this crucial juncture in his life," the channel said.

This was the rapper's second stint in the Arkansas prison. He served seven months there in 2009 as part of an unusual sentence negotiated two years ago to resolve federal gun charges. Those charges followed his attempt to buy three machine guns in the parking lot of an Atlanta grocery store.

His latest stint behind bars was triggered by his arrest, along with that of his wife, after a motorcycle officer stopped their car on Sunset Boulevard in Beverly Hills, California, a year ago.

A police report said suspected drugs were found in the couple's car and they were both arrested on drug charges. While the charge against the rapper was later dropped, he failed a drug test given by his parole officer.

CNN's Greg Botelho contributed to this report.

 
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