Musician Sly Stone Pleads Not Guilty to Drug Possession

it may just be a case of guilt by association.

On April 1, 68 year-old Sly Stone - leader of the legendary funk band Sly and the Family Stone - was arrested in Los Angeles when he was pulled over for a traffic violation and LAPD officers allegedly found several rocks of crack cocaine in his clothing.

On Wednesday, Stone and his lawyers pleaded not guilty.

In an official statement, Stone's lawyer, Peter Knecht, blamed the culture of musical celebrity.

"A lot of musicians hang out with people who have drugs," he told Reuters. He added: "you can't punish a guy for what he did 40 years ago, 30 years ago."

Stone (whose real name is Sylvester Stewart) has kept a low profile since his 70s heyday - but he does have a history of drug and weapon possession charges.

The enigmatic Stone made his last public appearance at the 2006 Grammy Awards, which featured a tribute to Sly and the Family Stone. However, word is that Stone has completed a new album - his first in almost 30 years - set for release in August.

Selected Reading: PopEater, Reuters, TMZ

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