Dancehall Artist Laden Gains Freedom After Serving Prison Time for Firearm Possession

Dancehall artist Laden, legally known as O’keefe Aarons, is set to regain his freedom today after serving a significant portion of his four-year prison sentence for firearm possession.

The artist, best known for his hit song “Time to Shine,” is expected to be released from prison today after completing nearly 30 months of his sentence. The paperwork has been signed, and his family and fans eagerly await his arrival.

A source close to the situation shared with The Observer, “We’re just here waiting for him to get to Junction, people excited for him to come out, ah big ting ah go gwaan.”

Attorney-at-law Thomas Levene acknowledged hearing about the artist’s anticipated release today, but refrained from providing an official statement.

Laden received a four-year sentence for illegal possession of a firearm and an 18-month sentence for illegal possession of ammunition in December 2020, after pleading guilty to both charges. Both sentences were to run concurrently, with a maximum service of four years. Prior to the sentencing, Laden had already spent three months in custody.

According to the police, on October 28, officers in Cheapside, St. Elizabeth signaled for the driver of a black Mercedes-Benz to pull over. Laden, who was driving the vehicle, initially complied but sped off as the officers approached. A subsequent chase led to the discovery of a firearm thrown from the car’s sunroof.

Laden first gained recognition as a top 10 finalist on Digicel Rising Star, performing under the stage name “Jim Laden.” Some of his well-known tracks include “Time to Shine,” “Feelings too Heavy,” and “Never Lonely.”