Future Covering Oldest Son's Legal Sitch ... Kid's Not 'Indigent'

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Future's not about to let his son be put through the legal system with some government-appointed briefcase -- he's getting the best attorneys for the kid and has his back 100%.

Sources close to the Future tell TMZ ... the MC and his baby mama are well aware of their oldest son, Jakobi, getting recently caught up with the law down in Georgia ... but they're already knee-deep in working on his case, including funding his defense.

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Jakobi was arrested in a gang bust down in Georgia last month ... where he's reportedly facing charges of criminal gang activity, trespass and the altered ID of a firearm. He was allegedly found in possession of a gun with the serial number scratched out.

The kid's 17 years old, BTW, but could face up to major time behind bars if he's convicted because GA tries 17-year-olds as adults. In the court docs, he reportedly listed himself as indigent and in need of a public defender, but we're told that ain't gonna happen.

Future's definitely got the dough to help his son, and we're told he absolutely intends to by hiring the best lawyers to be there for his own flesh and blood. Dad's covering legal fees.

Jakobi's mother, Jessica Smith, tells us she and Future have been on top of this legal matter, as they're actively involved in his life. She adds, "Our son is a minor and to protect his well being in this trying situation, we ask that everyone please respect our privacy at this time."

Vanessa Bryant Gianna's Jersey Retirement ... 'So Proud Of You Mamacita'

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RETIRIN' GIGI'S JERSEY

6:27 PM PT -- Vanessa just shared the scene from Gianna's jersey retirement ceremony at her private school.

Vanessa says, "My Gigi. I love you! I miss you. You've taught us all that no act of kindness is ever too small. Mommy is still and will ALWAYS be so proud of you mamacita."

3:32 PM PT -- Vanessa just made a new post about Gianna -- saying, "My Gianna. God I miss you."

"I’ve been so lucky to have woken up to see your gorgeous face and amazing smile for 13 years. Wish it would’ve been until my last breath."

"Mommy loves you to the moon and back. Infinity plus 1. #2 #Mambacita #GigiBryant."

"Miss you so much"

That's Vanessa Bryant posting about Kobe Bryant -- remembering him on social media as a "loving husband" and "The Best Daddy."

Vanessa went to Instagram on Wednesday to post about her husband -- referring to Kobe as "my best friend" and saying she misses all of the funny, sweet little things he would do during their marriage.

"Miss you saying, 'Bonjourno principessa/reina'" Vanessa wrote ... referencing Kobe's ability to speak Italian.

"#mybestfriend #theBestdaddy Miss you so much. #handsome #sweet #funny #silly #lovinghusband ❤️Miss you saying, “Bonjourno principessa/reina."

Vanessa also posted a clip from a recent "Extra" interview in which Kobe was asked to name his best friend -- and he responded, "My wife."

Just a few days ago, Vanessa posted a painting of her daughter Gianna Bryant dressed up in Lakers gear -- and wrote, "Seeing my babygirl smile and happy again with a basketball 🏀 under her arm, wrapped in 💜💛love just warmed my heart."

"Thank you for this. @_vivalareina thank you!! My Gigi.❤️ #Mambacita."

Kobe and Gianna passed away January 26. We're told the Bryant family is working on putting together a public memorial for them but nothing is set in stone yet.

Originally Published -- 9:50 AM PT

Dog the Bounty Hunter Chill Benihana Birthday Dinner ... No Sign of Moon Angell

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Dog the Bounty Hunter's tumultuous week of family drama was capped off with a birthday dinner filled with emotion ... but interestingly, without ONE key person.

Sources close to the reality TV star tell TMZ ... Duane celebrated his 67th birthday Tuesday with a small group of family and friends at a Denver Benihana. We're told everyone at the table shared stories ... including some about Beth Chapman, which made Dog a little weepy.

The guests included his daughter, Bonnie and her husband, his son, Garry, his advisor and Justin Bihag ... one of his employees who's run into legal trouble lately.

TMZ broke the story ... Justin was arrested for allegedly violating probation. Dog's other daughter, Lyssa, reportedly outed Justin to cops, but she's having some legal trouble of her own now.

It's a messy situation, and it all ties back to Justin's mom, Moon Angell.

In case you haven't heard, Moon is a longtime friend of Dog and Beth who's been accused of starting up a romantic relationship with the guy in the wake of Beth's passing. They've both denied anything physical is going on, insisting their relationship is platonic.

They even went on the 'Dr. Oz Show' and put on a "test" proposal to definitively confirm nothing fishy's going on between them, despite Lyssa's suspicions.

Interestingly enough, Moon was NOT at Dog's birthday dinner -- even though Justin was. We're told Dog loves the kid like one of his own and continues to look out for him.

No word on why Moon didn't show. But, probably doesn't hurt to let things cool off.

Mel B Ex-Husband Wages War ... Wants Full Custody

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Mel B's ex-husband is fresh off a major court victory but again he's coming for a pound of flesh in his custody war with the Spice Girl.

Stephen Belafonte's asking the court to grant him full legal and physical custody of their 8-year-old daughter, Madison, claiming Mel B's all but abandoned her after moving to the UK ... this according to new legal docs obtained by TMZ.

Mel's ex claims he's been the sole caregiver of Madison for the majority of 2018 and much of 2019. He says Mel's ensconced in England and absent from Madison's life. Stephen also wants Mel to have access to Madison but only in L.A. and only supervised visitation.

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As we reported ... Stephen -- who has had custody issues with Mel since settling their heated divorce -- got a judge last December to block Mel from taking their daughter to the UK for the holidays. At the time ... he claimed Madison was afraid Mel would hurt her. He also claimed Mel's asking their daughter for dirt on him.

Stephen claims he doesn't want to subject Madison to Mel's alleged verbal and psychological abuse. He claims he couldn't get a hold of Mel for days last Thanksgiving and when Mel's nanny dropped off Madison with Stephen, Madison told him "her mother would make her sit in a dark room and repeatedly question her over and over and demand answers from her."

Stephen claims this is why Madison "also told me that she was afraid her mother would hurt her." Moving forward, Stephen wants to make all parental decisions (medical care, schooling, etc.) when it comes to their daughter.

The judge has yet to sign off on Stephen's request.

R. Kelly's Ex-GF Azriel Going All-In On Advocacy, Music In Effort to Help Others

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R. Kelly's ex-girlfriend, Azriel Clary, already has the wheels in motion to not only help herself heal but to do the same for others ... and her plan includes multimedia and advocacy.

TMZ has learned about the next steps Azriel plans to take as she recovers from what she claims was a dysfunctional and abusive relationship with R. Kelly -- and one the first things she wants to dive into includes working with non-profit organizations that help protect young people.

The org is called Team Truth, and we're told it's run by her dad. It aims to educate minors and their families about types of abuse and how to escape it. Our sources say Azriel finds the cause near and dear to her heart, so she wants to take it up full force.

There's more though ... we're told Azriel also wants to focus her efforts on women of color specifically. She's planning on starting her own foundation dedicated to helping abused women take back control of their lives ... much like she's doing right now.

Speaking of that, we're told Azriel has even more in the works as far as reclaiming her independence and aspirations. She was working toward becoming a recording artist before getting with R. Kelly, and sources say she's pivoting back into that direction.

In fact, we're told she even has a YouTube series in the pipeline called "On the Run with Azriel," which will infuse her music career and her philanthropic efforts in one project.

As we told you, Azriel is already working with the feds in their cases against R. Kelly -- this despite death threats. She's also been doing interviews lately, which we're told she sees as a form of therapy and ultimately helpful in getting past her trauma.

Looks like she's gonna continue down that road of stepping up and speaking out instead of shying away in the aftermath.

Dog the Bounty Hunter Daughter Lyssa Arrested ... Alleged Harassment, Resisting Arrest

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3:04 PM PT -- Lyssa tells TMZ the cops were called over a fight she was having with her girlfriend. Lyssa says when officers arrived, she put her hand up in order to stop them from entering her room. Lyssa alleges the cop grabbed her by the arm and arrested her. She says she plans on filing a report for police misconduct against the officers.

Lyssa Chapman, daughter of Dog the Bounty Hunter, was busted in Hawaii for alleged harassment ... and she didn't go quietly, according to cops.

Law enforcement sources tell TMZ ... Lyssa was arrested in Honolulu Thursday night and booked for harassment and resisting arrest. She's already bailed out for $600.

It's unclear who she allegedly harassed, but her most recent tweet from before the arrest is interesting ...

As we've reported ... the Chapman family is going through some turmoil right now. Just months after the death of Dog's wife, Beth, he proposed to her best friend and maid of honor at their wedding, Moon Angell, on "The Dr. Oz Show."

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Our sources say Dog and Beth's kids are hurt and pissed off, and even though the proposal hasn't led to an engagement ... they don't support what's going on and don't believe their mom would either.

Lyssa, specifically, fired off a couple vague tweets after news broke of Dog proposing to Moon ... seemingly trying to keep her cool about the situation.

Apparently, she couldn't do the same when she was getting arrested.

Originally Published -- 9:53 AM PT

Dog The Bounty Hunter Kids Slam Proposal Mom Would Be Super Upset

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TMZ Composite

Beth Chapman would be heartbroken and angry had she watched Dog The Bounty Hunter propose to her former maid of honor on TV ... at least according to their children.

Sources close to Dog and Beth's kids tell TMZ ... they've seen the clips of their father proposing to one of his late wife's friends, Moon Angell on "The Dr. Oz Show" ... and it's a total gut-punch!!!

Our sources say the Chapman kids are convinced Beth would NOT support the proposal ... and they feel Beth would be incensed if she saw it go down.

The reason -- we're told Beth and Moon had a chat before she passed and Moon allegedly told Beth she would take care of Dog after Beth died. Our sources say Beth told her kids about the convo, and no one was happy.

As we reported ... Dog and Moon are not actually engaged, despite the TV proposal, but he's grown close to Moon and she's helping him through the grieving process.

Sources close to the kids tell us they were also extremely hurt when Dog confessed Moon was the reason he decided against taking his own life ... we're told the kids felt their father should want to stay alive for his own kids' sake.

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However, sources close to Dog tell us he has NO intention of replacing Beth with Moon. He's just trying to navigate life without his wife, and Moon helps with the day-to-day grind.

Our Dog sources add ... he definitely cares about his kids and wants to be there for them, and he's still got Beth's ashes in his bedroom.

To see more from Dog, watch Dr. Oz on February 3.

Conor McGregor All Smiles At Disney ... Happy As Duck!!!

Here's Conor McGregor having the time of his life at the happiest place on Earth ... and now we know he's a huge fan of Donald Duck!!!

The Irish superstar hit up Disney California Adventure Park in Anaheim Thursday with his girlfriend, Dee Devlin, and their two kids, Conor Jr. and Croia.

Conor was all smiles under his Donald Duck hat, and Dee also got in the Disney spirit with some classic Minnie Mouse ears. The happy family was mostly hanging out at Pixar Pier, and folks tell us they stopped Buzz Lightyear for a photo op.

Seems Conor is still riding high following last week's UFC 246 victory ... and he's doing what most athletes do after winning the big one ... checking out the Mouse House.

It's pretty cool ... the park uses Conor's Proper Twelve Irish Whiskey in its Irish coffee ... but no word if he treated himself.

Ciara & Russell Wilson We're Expecting!!! ... She's Preggers with #3

Russell Wilson may have come up short on his quest for the Super Bowl this year, but he's winning off the field -- Ciara's pregnant ... and this child matches his jersey number.

The husband and wife made the announcement together Thursday morning ... via back-to-back posts on Instagram with the simple caption, "Number 3."

Russell's selfie featured a pregnant Ciara posing in the background, and he made sure to flaunt a #3 around his neck too.

This will be the couple's second child together, but her third. She has a son, Future Jr., from her previous relationship with Future. Wilson became his stepfather when he and Ciara wed in England in July 2016.

Ciara and Russell welcomed their first kid, a daughter named Sienna Princess, in April 2017.

It's unclear when Ciara's due, but she's due to take the stage at Rolling Stone's Super Bowl concert Saturday in Miami at SLS South Beach.

And, now we know ... she'll be singing for 2.

Vanessa Bryant Kobe & Gigi Are 'Shining On Us' ... Sharing Grief with All the Families

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5:35 PM PT -- Vanessa is thanking the "millions of people who've shown support and love during this horrific time." She just posted a heart-wrenchingly beautiful family photo of Kobe, herself and their 4 daughters.

Vanessa says they are "completely devastated by the sudden loss of my adoring husband, Kobe -- the amazing father of our children; and my beautiful, sweet Gianna." She also says they're struggling to imagine life without them, but adds ... "we wake up each day, trying to keep pushing because Kobe, and our baby girl, Gigi, are shining on us to light the way."

She also wrote some touching and sweet words about all the prayers they're getting from around the world, and described their love for Kobe and Gigi as "immeasurable."

Click above to read her full post. It's an incredible tribute, not only to her family ... but to all the families involved in the crash.

Kobe Bryant's wife, Vanessa, has made her first public move since her husband and their daughter, Gigi, died tragically in a helicopter crash ... sharing a heartbreaking image of her lost loves.

Vanessa just changed the profile image on her official Instagram account to a picture of Kobe and Gigi ... and it's the first time she's publicly acknowledged the shocking loss.

In the pic, Kobe is embracing Gigi. She's got her arm on his shoulder, and he's lovingly gazing down. The snap is from the 2016 NBA All-Star Game in Toronto, the last of Kobe's 18 All-Star appearances.

Vanessa hasn't said anything publicly yet about her husband and daughter's passing, and you gotta feel for her in this extremely rough time ... but this picture speaks volumes.

TMZ broke the story ... Kobe and Gigi died in a devastating helicopter crash in Calabasas on Sunday morning, which claimed the lives of 7 others.

All 9 passengers of the chopper have been identified ... including Kobe, Gigi, John Altobelli, Keri Altobelli, Alyssa Altobelli, Sarah Chester, Payton Chester, Christina Mauser and the pilot, Ara Zobayan.

Kobe and Gigi were heading to the Mamba Sports Academy in Thousand Oaks for her basketball game.

Originally Published -- 11:20 AM PT

LeBron James Son Honors Kobe With Insane Dunk ... Postgame Hugs With Dad

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IMPRESSIN' POPS
ESPN

LeBron James' son honored Kobe's legacy in the best possible way Tuesday night ... throwing down an insane dunk and showing big love to his NBA pops afterward.

Bronny James was playing in his first high school game since Bryant tragically passed in a helicopter crash Sunday ... and the scene at Sierra Canyon was emotional.

LeBron was able to attend after the Lakers postponed their game against the Clippers to mourn Kobe's death ... and Bronny and his team honored the legend throughout the night.

Sierra Canyon wore Lakers and Kobe shirts in the pregame warmups ... and the team -- along with its Campbell Hall HS opponents -- took a 24-second shot-clock violation to start the night as a tribute to Bryant.

But, the most amazing ode to Kobe came during the 3rd quarter ... when Bronny took a lob from his teammate and hammered it home so hard, the gym exploded.

It looked awfully familiar ...

Bronny's squad ended up rolling to a victory ... and afterward, LeBron was loving the moment with his fam -- sharing an incredible embrace with LBJ Jr. and his wife, Savannah.

ALL HUGS
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LeBron said earlier this week Bryant's death was SUPER tough on him, writing in an emotional goodbye to the 41-year-old, "I promise you I’ll continue your legacy man!"

Seems Bronny is down to do the same.

Kobe Bryant Memorial Could Be at L.A. Coliseum ... Staples Too Small

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Kobe Bryant's public memorial could be such a massive event, organizers are considering holding it at the famous L.A. Coliseum because the Staples Center simply isn't big enough.

Our sources tell us ... a meeting took place this week to discuss where Kobe's eventual memorial might go down in the coming weeks or even months. People who were in the room say a few venues were considered -- some made more sense than others.

Of course, the Staples Center is considered "The House That Kobe Built" -- but it only holds around 20,000 people ... and judging by the massive response to his death, organizers feel they should be ready for a MUCH larger crowd.

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The Coliseum holds roughly 80,000 people -- and the surrounding parks are capable of holding many, many more. It seems the most logical option at this point.

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The Rose Bowl was also brought up as a possible venue -- since it holds nearly 91,000 -- but we're told Pasadena is just too far away.

Our sources say no official decision has been made yet, but the conversation is underway. As for Kobe's funeral service, no decisions have been made about that either.

GOING THROUGH THE WRECKAGE
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It could be some time before the memorial is booked because everyone in Kobe's immediate life is still shattered and reeling from the tragedy.

Kobe was just 41 when he died Sunday. His daughter, Gianna, who also passed away in the helicopter crash, was only 13.

Kobe Bryant Father/Daughter Date With Bianka ... Day Before Death

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Kobe Bryant spent his Saturday night playing with his 3-year-old daughter, Bianka ... just hours before his tragic death, TMZ Sports has learned.

We obtained footage of the 41-year-old spending some quality time with Bianka at the Fashion Island mall in Newport Beach the night before the tragedy ... playing at the center's koi pond and walking through the stores.

We're told they looked adorable together -- just enjoying each other's company. The Bryants were regulars at the mall and other local spots. In other words, it wasn't unusual to see Kobe around town with his kids.

The footage is devastating to watch ... knowing it's the last outing Bianka had with her dad.

Nicki Minaj's Brother Gets 25 to Life for Child Rape

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Nicki Minaj's brother was just sentenced to 25 years to life in prison following the guilty verdict in his child rape trial.

Judge Robert McDonald sentenced Jelani Maraj in a New York court Monday ... several months after the verdict been reached.

As we reported ... Maraj was found guilty of predatory sexual assault against a child and endangering the welfare of a child in a trial that lasted less than 3 weeks. At the time of the verdict, the Nassau County D.A. told us, "We hope that today's verdict will help the family in the healing process."

Back in 2017, Nicki visited her brother while he was locked up. We were told she only went to support her mother.

TMZ broke the story ... Nicki never testified during the trial -- despite claims made by her brother's defense team that she would.

Whitney Houston Biopic Role Should Go to THIS Actress ... So Says Sister-in-Law

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TARAJI MAKES ME EMOTIONAL
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A new Whitney Houston biopic is in the early stages from famed record producer Clive Davis, but people already want to know who will play the singer ... and her sister-in-law just dropped a big hint.

Pat Houston was at LAX Friday and talked about Clive's project, revealing she's actually working with the legendary music industry exec on it.

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She says Davis is a wonderful person -- he's also credited with bringing Houston to prominence -- so Pat's doing anything she can to help him. Whether she meant to or not, she's already doing a good job ... by recruiting Taraji P. Henson.

It's pretty funny ... Pat says she can't reveal who's on the wish list to play Whitney because it's a secret, but can't help but blurt out how much she loves Henson and wants her for the role.

Sounds like Taraji should call her agent.

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