If you were wondering just how ugly things had gotten between shawty-fêting hip-hop superstar 50 Cent and his ex-babymomma Shaniqua Tompkins, we refer you to this eyewitness video of the pair verbally sparring on the streets of New York yesterday, surrounded by a small crowd of celebrity-domestic-squabble afficionados. At the center of the dispute: the couple's once-shared Long Island home, where Tompkins lives with 50's 10-year-old son. (He wants her to pay rent and sued to evict her. She fired back with a countersuit claiming the house was a gift.) At 5 a.m., the house was ablaze—a conveniently timed turn of events that instantly aroused suspicion from local fire-safety authorities:
When pressed for details, [Dix Hills Fire Department Chief Larry] Feld said, "I would say there is a strong possibility that it is suspicious because of the rapid movement of the fire, the volume of the fire that we had upon arrival, and the intensity. When I arrived — and I got there early — the whole first floor and second floor was engulfed, and the home was totally gutted. [...]
A statement released Friday by 50's rep reads: "Informed this morning while filming a new motion picture on location in Louisiana, [50 Cent] expressed deep concern over this fire at his property. He is extremely thankful that everyone including his son, Marquise, escaped the burning house safely. He is confident that authorities will be conducting a thorough investigation of the incident and is eager to review their findings."
Addressing reporters outside the remains of her home, Tompkins said that she heard an intruder in the house this morning, and that 50 is "obsessed" with her and has threatened her life. We think it was a wise, if sometimes questionably motivated, lyricist who once said, "If the roof is on fire, let the muthafucka burn. If you talking about money, homie, I ain't concerned." Never before has the poetry of the street resonated with such dire consequence.