April 09, 1998 12:00 AM

Over the weekend, New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani dismissed accusations that the NYPD is gunning for rappers like Jay-Z, who was busted on a weapons charge early Friday morning after leaving a Manhattan nightclub. “The NYPD targets people who illegally possess guns. They target people who illegally use guns,” Giuliani, who has long been criticized by his city’s African-American community, told reporters. “Here’s a way not to get in trouble with the NYPD: Don’t shoot anybody, don’t rob anybody, don’t rape anybody and don’t carry guns illegally.” After police arrested Jay-Z and three members of his crew, reports the New York Post, the hip-hop star’s camp suggested that the NYPD was “profiling” rappers — watching or pulling them over in the hopes of finding something illegal. Regarding Friday’s incident, Street Crime Unit officers said they pulled over Jay-Z, bodyguard Hamza Hewitt, driver Romero Chambers and Tyran Smith after spotting Hewitt shove a gun into his waistband outside Club Exit. All three have been released on bail.

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