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updated: 4/11/2014 2:31 PM

Rapper Chief Keef pleads not guilty to DUI

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Emerging Chicago rap star Chief Keef pleaded not guilty in Lake County court Friday to charges of driving under the influence of drugs.

Keith Cozart, 18, of the 800 block of Happ Road in Northfield, faces one count of misdemeanor driving under the influence of drugs and a potential sentence of one year in jail after being arrested by Highland Park police on March 6.

He remains free from custody after posting the required 10 percent of his $3,000 bond.

According to his bio at, Cozart is one of the most popular teenage rappers in America and the youngest record label head in history.

Cozart did not talk to reporters after his brief appearance in court Friday.

Defense attorney Leah Starkman said after the hearing Cozart believes "he is being unfairly targeted" by police in North Shore suburbs because of his notoriety.

Lake County Judge Joseph Waldeck granted a special bond to allow Cozart to fly out of state as needed for work.

Waldeck said in court Cozart faces a $2,500 fine and could be sentenced up to a year in jail if found guilty of DUI.

Cozart is due to return to court on May 16 at 9 a.m.

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