Rapper DMX sentenced to six months in Arizona jail

Earl Simmons, aka rap artist DMX, is shown in this Maricopa County Sheriff Department booking mugshot released to Reuters March 9, 2010. REUTERS/Maricopa Sheriff’s Office/Handout

PHOENIX (Reuters) - An Arizona judge sentenced rapper and actor DMX on Tuesday to six months in a Phoenix jail for violating his probation by regularly using drugs, court officials said.

The rapper, whose real name is Earl Simmons, was also placed on 20 months probation by Maricopa County Court Commissioner Christine Mulleneaux.

Simmons, 39, was arrested last week after authorities said he admitted to using cocaine and not complying with the terms of his treatment plan. He faced five counts of violating probation.

The New York-born rapper, whose albums include “...And then There was X” and who starred in the movies “Romeo Must Die” and “Cradle 2 The Grave”, has a long record of arrests on charges ranging from animal cruelty to reckless driving and weapons possession.

During Tuesday’s court hearing, the judge revealed that an offer had been made to treat Simmons by the Pasadena Recovery Center in California, which is featured in VH1’s reality TV show “Celebrity Rehab.” She said such an offer would have to be approved by California court officials.

Center co-founder Michael Bloom told Reuters that he wanted to help Simmons.

“We made to the offer and we would take him in, if the court is OK with that,” he said, adding that celebrity therapist Dr. Drew Pinsky would be involved in DMX’s treatment.

Simmons has faced continued legal trouble in Arizona. He was on probation for throwing a food tray at a detention officer inside a Phoenix jail last year.

Reporting by David Schwartz, editing by Tim Gaynor and Jill Serjeant