Why Is SPM in Jail?

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Carlos Coy, popularly known as SPM (South Park Mexican), is an American rapper and record producer who founded Dope House Records, an independent record label.

His 2006 album, When Devils Strike, was second in the U.S. Independent Albums chart. Meanwhile, The Last Chair Violinist landed at number three, and The Son of Norma took the number nine spot.

 Even while convicted as a sex offender in 2002, SPM continued releasing song albums while in prison. SPM was jailed for aggravated sexual assault of a nine-year-old child in 2001.

From being a promising artist to facing several legal issues, SPM’s experience has captured fans’ interest and sparked debates.

What are the details of SPM’s crime that got him arrested? How long will he be locked up in jail? Does his sentence qualify him for parole?

This article tackles these questions and describes SPM’s situation in jail. This article also describes his early challenges in life and achievements in the music industry.

Do you have a relative or loved one convicted of sex-related crimes but do not know whether they are imprisoned? Visit LookUpInmate.org and use its online lookup tool to search for inmates and their locations.

Why Did SPM Go to Jail?

SPM went to jail in May 2002 for sexually assaulting a minor.

Sexual assault refers to sexual contact or behavior that happens without the victim’s explicit consent. Some forms of sexual assault are as follows:

  • Attempted rape
  • Fondling or unwanted sexual touching
  • Forcing the victim to commit sexual acts, like oral sex or penetrating the perpetrator’s body
  • Penetrating the victim’s body, also called rape

The penalties for sexual assault in the United States usually vary by state. In Texas, this crime has the following categories:

  • First-degree felony
    • If the offender is prohibited from marrying or intending to marry the victim or prohibited from appearing to be married, the penalty is a maximum fine of $10,000 and imprisonment of 5 to 99 years.
    • If the individual with whom the criminal was prohibited from engaging in sexual intercourse or deviate sexual intercourse, the penalty is a fine of up to $10,000 and imprisonment of 180 days to 2 years.
    • If the individual was previously convicted of a felony or a deadly weapon was used, the penalty is a maximum fine of $10,000 and imprisonment of 2 to 10 years.
  • Second-degree felony: The penalty is imprisonment of 2 to 20 years and a fine of up to $10,000.

Child sexual abuse is a widespread problem. In 2016, Child Protective Services (CPS) agencies in the U.S. said that 57,329 children were victims of sexual abuse. Furthermore, one in nine girls and 1 in 20 boys below 18 experience sexual abuse or assault.

Aside from serving jail time, Coy was fined $10,000 in 2001 for attacking a child, a friend of his daughter, Carley Coy. The incident was said to have occurred during a party he held for Carley.

In March 2002, two other charges were filed against Coy for the sexual assault of two 14-year-old girls.

For his horrendous acts, Coy received a substantial 45-year jail sentence. At 31, he was placed behind bars at the Ramsey Unit in Rosharon, Texas.

The Ramsey Unit is a mixed-custody facility that holds inmates from minimum to maximum security levels. As of October 2023, the facility’s capacity was 1,891 adult male inmates, comprising 1,570 offenders in the main unit and another 321 inmates in the Trusty Camp.

This facility stands on a 14,667-acre land shared with two other units, Stringfellow and Terrell. These three facilities work cooperatively and provide inmates with employment opportunities in agricultural operations.

Despite the sentence Coy received, he says he is not guilty. Reports mention he can get paroled in 2024. However, he is not expected to leave until April 8, 2047.

In Texas, the date an inmate can qualify for parole depends on their conviction. In many cases, the inmate becomes eligible when the served time plus good conduct time equals 15 years or 25% of the jail sentence, whichever is lesser.

However, a charge for a 3G offense can change a criminal’s parole eligibility. In Texas, 3G offenses are a unique classification of felony offenses considered more severe than most crimes. 

3G offenses include the following:

  • Sexual assault on or with a child
  • Aggravated robbery
  • Murder
  • Intoxicated manslaughter

For an inmate convicted of a 3G offense to qualify for parole, they must comply with the following conditions:

  • Serve at least two years in jail.
  • Do not receive good time credits for time served.
  • Serve at least half of their jail sentence.

Parole is a privilege granted to a criminal after serving a part of their prison sentence. The goals of parole are rehabilitating criminals and guiding them to return to society while reducing the likelihood that they will commit another violation.

Parolees must comply with specific terms and conditions while on parole. These terms include any of the following:

  • Living within county or state lines
  • Meeting regularly with the parole officer
  • Submitting to alcohol and drug tests
  • Providing proof of employment and residence

If the parolee violates their parole conditions, their parole can get revoked, and they will return to prison.

When Did SPM Go to Jail?

On September 25, 2001, the Houston police arrested SPM on an aggravated sexual assault charge. The incident happened on a Labor Day weekend that year. Authorities released him from jail after he posted bail.

Bail is the amount a defendant pays for their temporary liberty until their trial. Bail is not a fine and should not be used as punishment. Instead, bail ensures the defendant attends trial and pretrial hearings.

The amount posted as bail is returned to the defendant after the trial. Some states deduct a processing fee from the bail amount.

SPM’s 2002 conviction was not his first time to be placed in prison, although he has always gotten out.

A Harris County jury in Texas indicted him on December 10, 2001. The jury added another charge for a 1993 incident wherein the rapper reportedly impregnated a then-13-year-old girl, who later demanded child support from him.

The accusations did not end there, and in March 2022, two more charges for the sexual assault of two 14-year-old girls followed. This time, SPM was held without bail.

When SPM’s trial began on May 8, 2002, the alleged nine-year-old victim’s mother testified that the abuse prompted the child to leave a sleepover.

The next day of the hearing, the child testified that SPM touched her inappropriately while she slept. On May 18, 2002, a Houston jury charged the rapper with aggravated sexual assault of a child.

SPM’s hearing in May 2002 concluded with the court convicting him of aggravated sexual assault of a child. Following the legal trial, he received his prison sentence on May 30, 2002.

According to the State of Texas, sexual assault against a child is committed when the following acts are knowingly or intentionally carried out, regardless of whether or not the perpetrator knows the child’s age:

  • Penetration of the child’s anus or sexual organ by any means
  • Penetration of the child’s mouth by the actor’s sexual organ
  • The child’s sexual organ contacting or penetrating another person’s mouth, anus, or sexual organ
  • The child’s anus contacting the other person’s mouth, anus, or sexual organ
  • The child’s mouth contacting the other person’s anus or sexual organ

In Texas, aggravated sexual assault of a minor or aggravated sexual assault of a child refers to sexual assault on an individual below 14 years of age. The crime is “aggravated” when the perpetrator threatens the victim with serious bodily injury or uses a deadly weapon.

Aggravated sexual assault of a child in Texas is a first-degree felony offense. As mentioned earlier, the punishment for this crime is 5 to 99 years in prison or imprisonment for life

Some individuals may view sexual assault of a child as similar to child molestation. The latter refers to various activities with sexual undertones perpetrated by adults against children.

Aside from sexual activity, other forms of inappropriate touching that fall under child molestation include the following:

  • Exposing a minor to pornography
  • Non-penetrating contact
  • Convincing a minor to watch sexual acts

If the minor is the offender’s instrument for sexual gratification or stimulation purposes, the actions can be classified as molestation.

After SPM eventually went to prison at Ramsey Unit in Rosharon, the timing of his incarceration raised significant scrutiny and debate. His sentence prompted people to discuss the complex relationships between an artist’s musical career and personal life.

Despite the lengthy jail sentence he received, SPM’s eligibility for parole in 2024 means there is a possibility of an early release, depending on the parole board’s decision.

What Is His Current Situation?

As of November 2023, SPM is serving a 45-year prison sentence for aggravated assault and has spent 21 years in prison since his May 2002 conviction.

Despite the length of his sentence and the number of years he spent in prison, SPM has consistently insisted on his innocence throughout the case.

The circumstances associated with his conviction have led to a substantial presence of supporters, notably online, advocating for his release.

Although the court has handed out the sentence, these supporters continue to express doubts about SPM’s guilt and call for his case’s reevaluation.

This continued support for SPM from online posters underscores the challenges of reconciling an artist’s personal life and artistic contributions. Such complexities can lead to ongoing discussions about the intersection of art, justice, and public opinion.

SPM Release Date From Prison

SPM’s estimated release date from imprisonment is on April 8, 2047. However, he may get out as early as 2024 if he becomes eligible for parole.

Based on a June 2023 report, SPM is already incarcerated in the Allred Unit in Wichita Falls, Texas.

The Allred Unit, named after Texas Governor James V. Allred, is a maximum security facility on 320-acre land in Wichita County and has a capacity of 3,722 adult male offenders. The facility employs approximately 939 people.

With its large inmate population, Allred Unit holds the distinction of being one of the largest of its kind of facility. The prison houses inmates in four distinct categories:

  • General population
  • Safekeeping
  • Administrative segregation
  • High-security expansion cell block

The Allred Unit also provides inmates with educational opportunities, including the following:

  • Adult basic education and general education development (GED) classes
  • Literacy courses
  • Vocational programs in automotive air conditioning repair, electrical training, small engine repair, and bricklaying or masonry

Meanwhile, SPM may be eligible for parole in 2024, as mentioned earlier. However, the final decision still lies with the parole board, which will evaluate several factors to determine whether the rapper’s release is justified.

Parole boards do not immediately grant parole to inmates just because the offender exhibited good behavior while in prison. The panel will also review the nature and severity of the offense committed, the length of the sentence served, and the offender’s degree of remorse for the crime.

Afterward, the board will examine the offender’s capacity to obtain gainful employment and establish a permanent residence upon release. The panel will grant parole should the offender appear to be of no apparent threat to public safety and be willing and able to reenter society.

Many people believe SPM is falsely charged and have raised their voices for his seemingly unjust conviction. While others think SPM is innocent, the case says otherwise, resulting in SPM’s 45-year sentence and a $10,000 fine.

Early Problems and Crack Dealing

Carlos Coy’s father, Arturo, was a Marine from Falfurrias, Texas. Coy’s mother quit high school to marry Arturo. 

However, Coy’s parents ended their marriage three years after he was born. Coy’s sister, Sylvia, acted as both mother and sister to him.

Coy attended several elementary schools before entering and settling for Welch Middle School’s music magnet program.

Welch Middle School is in the Brays Oaks District in Houston, Texas. The school’s magnet programs have produced several famous alums, such as ballerina Lauren Anderson and singers Beyonce Knowles and Kelly Rowland.

Afterward, Coy’s family moved from southeast Houston to South Park, located in Houston’s south-central area, where he began attending Woodson Middle School.

During his early teens, Coy was exposed to bad influences and became a crack cocaine dealer. Another American rapper, Scarface, also attended Woodson but later quit school and started dealing drugs.

Scarface, whose real name is Brad Terrence Jordan, hails from Houston, Texas.

In his career as a rapper, singer, and record producer, Scarface worked with many well-known hip-hop artists, such as Jay-Z, Ice Cube, 2Pac, and Nas. Scarface’s rap influence was unmatched since entering the hip-hop scene during the late 1980s.

When Coy entered high school, he attended Milby High before getting expelled in ninth grade in 1987. He obtained a GED later and enrolled for a business associate degree at San Jacinto Junior College. However, he failed all his classes in that school.

This underachievement led Coy to work for minimum wage at a chemical plant. He became unemployed later, so he sought a different job as a door-to-door perfume salesman. Despite having such legitimate work, Coy continued being a cocaine dealer.

Cocaine is a powerful, addictive stimulant processed from the leaves of the coca plant found in South America. Healthcare providers typically use this drug for valid medical purposes, like local anesthesia for some surgeries. However, recreational cocaine use is illegal.

Although cocaine’s short-term effects include mental alertness or extreme energy and happiness, the drug can also cause irritability, paranoia, or hypersensitivity to sight, touch, and sound. Furthermore, a cocaine overdose can cause life-threatening symptoms or death.

Who Is Carlos Coy?

Carlos Coy, who uses the stage name “SPM,” is a U.S.-based rapper born on October 5, 1970, in Houston’s South Park area in Texas.

Coy had been in and out of school in his younger years and worked as a drug dealer. He went through many challenges, such as working for minimum wage and selling crack cocaine, before becoming a well-known performer in the music industry.

He started Dope House Records, an independent record label, and released his first record, Hillwood, in 1995. While he was in jail, he put out nine albums.

When Devils Strike, his album from 2006, reached No. 2 on the U.S. Independent Albums chart. His following two albums, The Last Chair Violinist and The Son of Norma, hit No. 3 and No. 9, respectively.

What Does SPM Stand for?

Carlos Coy grew up in Houston’s South Park. Since then, he took the name “South Park Mexican,” which is where SPM comes from.

South Park is a neighborhood in Harris County, Texas. Many residents own their homes, and this community offers a sparse suburban feel. South Park has plenty of parks, and many families in this community tend to be liberal. The public schools in South Park are above average.

Based on the 2021 American Community Survey data from the U.S. Census Bureau, South Park’s population was around 28,669.

Rapper SPM Career

Coy’s career began as a Christian rapper due to the influence of the Christian household in which he grew up. However, he later felt that doing so turned him into an outcast. In 1994, Coy adopted the stage name “South Park Mexican” and began rapping and recording songs.

In 1995, Coy’s brother, Arthur Jr., and a friend, Jose Antonio Garza from McAllen, Texas, joined him to establish their record label named Dope House Records.

As SPM, Coy released his debut album named Hillwood under his record label in March 1995. The album’s songs include “Comin up Comin Down,” “Children of the Ghetto,” and “Vengeance.”

Coy promoted this album for two years. Afterward, he worked on his second album, Hustle Town, in 1997 and released it in 1998.

Some of Hustle Town’s songs are “Mary-Go-Round,” “Runaway,” “Streets on Beats,” and “Night Shift.” The album became an instant success in Houston’s underground rap scene.

Mainstream Attention

On December 22, 1998, SPM released his third album, Power Moves: The Table, which gained mainstream popularity.

In November of the following year, he released his fourth album, The 3rd Wish: To Rock the World. This album’s lead single, “High So High,” became a huge success, charting at the 50th spot on the Billboard Hot Rap Tracks chart.

SPM signed a deal between his record label and Universal Music Group (UMG) in February 2000. This deal earned him national distribution and an advance payment of $500,000.

UMG is the world’s leading music company, consisting of entrepreneurs committed to innovation and creativity. The company owns and operates numerous businesses engaged in recording music, merchandising, publishing music, and producing audiovisual content in more than 60 territories.

The company identifies and develops recording songwriters and artists and produces, distributes, and promotes commercially successful and critically acclaimed music to entertain and delight fans worldwide.

UMG’s broad catalog of songs and recordings goes back over a century and comprises the largest, culturally rich, and most diverse collection of music ever put together.

UMG released three of Coy’s albums, namely:

  • Time Is Money (2000)
  • The Purity Album (2000)
  • Never Change (2001)

Songs under Time Is Money include “Twice Last Night,” “Throw Away Gats”, “Anything Goes,” and “Don’t Let Em Fool Ya.”

The Purity Album contains “You Know My Name,” a famous single that peaked at the number 31 spot on the Billboard rap chart and claimed the number 99 spot on the rhythm and blues (R&B) chart.

Other songs in this album include “Follow My Lead,” “Child of the Ghetto,” and “Meet Your Fate.”

Meanwhile, Never Change contains songs such as “All Cot Up,” “I Must Be High,” “Filthy Rich,” and “One of Those Nights.”

Musical Style and Albums During Incarceration

Many of SPM’s lyrics are about growing up in the barrio and living the street life he experienced after quitting high school. Despite such content, the songs contain messages of hope and making life better.

In the U.S., a barrio is a Spanish-speaking community or quarter within a town or city, especially in the Southwest. A barrio can also be a ward or district in any Spanish-speaking country.

What distinguishes SPM’s songs is that his music style focuses on major hip-hop, gangsta rap, Southern hip-hop, chopped and screwed music remixing, and Chicano rap.

Hip-hop is a cultural movement that became popular in the 1980s and ’90s and functioned as rap’s backing music. Rap is a musical style incorporating rhyming or rhythmic speech or both, which became the movement’s most influential and lasting art form.

Gangsta rap is hip-hop music that became dominant during the 1990s and reflected the violent lifestyle often seen in American inner cities afflicted with poverty, drug use, and drug dealing.

Southern rap (also called Southern hip-hop) is a hip-hop subgenre that originated from the American South and was among the most prominent rap music types in the 2000s. This music has three predominant styles:

  • Party music: This style is minimalistic and contains bass-heavy instrumentals, chanted choruses, and overt sexism.
  • Soulful style: This style features a slower, chill production and has influences from soul and gospel music, often containing lyrics dealing with social issues.
  • The eerie, no-holds-barred style: This style has creepy and lo-fi production, a distinctively quick flow style, and unglamorous lyrics containing brutal descriptions of criminality.

Chicano rap is a hip-hop subgenre that emerged in the 1990s and is characterized by its fusion of Mexican and American cultural influences.

The lyrics often touch on gang life, drug use, and social injustice, and the music is known for its heavy use of Spanish language and Latin American rhythms. The genre has gained popularity in the Southwest United States and has produced several successful artists.

Despite UGM’s backing, SPM’s Universal releases did not perform well and barely gained mainstream attention. Some critics said SPM’s hardcore rapping was too harsh for the masses to listen to.

In 2002, he released the album Reveille Park, a compilation of freestyles, under Dope House Records. The album’s songs include “Get Yo Guns,” “Lobo Wanna Raise,” and “I Need a Sweet.”

His record label also released two new albums, When Devils Strike in 2006 and The Last Chair Violinist in 2008, which Coy recorded while in prison.

When Devils Strike debuted at the number 46 spot on the Billboard 200. Some of the album’s notable songs are “The Day of Unity,” “Real Gangsta,” “SPM Diaries,” and “In My Hood.”

Meanwhile, the songs in The Last Chair Violinist include “Jackers in My Home,” “Mexican Heaven,” and “The Dope House Mind.”

On September 30, 2014, SPM released The Son of Norma after a six-year hiatus while still in prison. This album’s songs include “If It Were You,” “The S.O.N.,” and “Till They Come.”

FAQs

  1. When did SPM start his music career and establish his record label?

SPM’s music career began in 1994. Afterward, he founded Dope House Records, his record label, in 1995.

  1. Has SPM released any albums during his incarceration?

While SPM was in prison, Dope House Records released two albums, When Devils Strike in 2006 and The Last Chair Violinist in 2008.

  1. Is there ongoing debate surrounding SPM’s case?

The intersection of SPM’s artistic achievements and his personal actions, especially concerning his crimes, have fueled ongoing discussions and debates.

Despite SPM’s conviction and sentencing, there are persistent calls from online individuals to free SPM. Likewise, those supporting the court’s decision want their voices heard. They want the law to keep him behind bars.

Although SPM has released several albums while in prison and can still record music while incarcerated, people petitioning to keep him locked up believe no female child is safe as long as criminals like SPM walk the streets.

  1. How old is SPM?

SPM is 53 years old as of November 2023. He was born Carlos Coy on October 5, 1970, in the South Park neighborhood of Houston, Texas. This community ultimately became the inspiration for his stage name.

  1. Did SPM have kids?

SPM has one daughter named Carley Coy. Based on a July 2022 report, it is unclear how old she is and whether she has children.

Years after her father was sent to prison, Carley took over the Dope House Records label. Since then, she has set up a merchandise store at Corpus Christi Trade Centre in Houston, Texas, selling her dad’s memorabilia.

Like her father, Carley makes her own music. In 2016, she released an extended play (E.P.) of Daughter of the S.O.N. (shortened to D.O.T.S.). The following year, she released the album My Father’s Revenge.

An E.P. is a musical release typically longer than a single but shorter than a full-length album. E.P.s usually contain around four to six tracks.

In 2019, she released a four-disc E.P. collection containing tracks from My Father’s Revenge, D.O.T.S., Dope World Entertainment Family Reunion, and The Forgotten Folders.

References

  1. Sexual Assault
    https://www.rainn.org/articles/sexual-assault
  2. How Courts Work
    https://www.americanbar.org/groups/public_education/resources/law_related_education_network/how_courts_work/bail/
  3. Sex Crimes: Definitions and Penalties Texas
    https://apps.rainn.org/policy/policy-crime-definitions-export.cfm?state=Texas&group=3
  4. What is cocaine?
    https://nida.nih.gov/publications/drugfacts/cocaine
  5. Hip-hop
    https://www.britannica.com/art/hip-hop
  6. Gangsta rap
    https://www.britannica.com/art/gangsta-rap

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