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2 gun incidents this year prompt Phoenix board to outlaw music style linked to drugs, violence

The raucous brand of rap music known as hyphy has been banned officially from Petaluma's Phoenix Theater following a recent shooting and a gun incident earlier this year.

Also, other acts headed to the all-ages concert venue will face more rigorous screening to ensure they are not a threat to safety.

"The hyphy genre promotes a culture of violence," said Bruce Hagen, president of the theater's board of directors. "We decided if someone is advertising themselves as hyphy, we are not going to book them."

Police lauded the move, approved by unanimous vote of the theater board late last week.

The fast-paced music born on the streets of Oakland encourages fighting and drugs and ushers in a "bad element," said Lt. Tim Lyons. "We're very happy they are taking a harder look at the concerts they are bringing to the Phoenix," he said.

The shooting happened in a parking garage outside a Dec. 6 hyphy concert that drew 350 young people. A dispute apparently arose between two groups of men inside the theater near the end of performances by Mistah F.A.B., J Diggs, Rydah J Klyde and Glasses Malone, theater officials said.

The men were escorted by security guards to their cars but apparently continued the fight in the nearby garage on Keller Street.

Shots rang out as police arrived, scattering a crowd of about 50 people gathered to watch. Two young men were wounded.

Police locked the garage in an attempt to round up witnesses and suspects. So far, no arrests have been reported, and the identities of the wounded men have not been disclosed.

It was the second gun-related incident this year.


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