NEW YORK (FOX 5 NY) - It was supposed to be the biggest night of Troy Ave's rising career- performing on stage with hip hop superstar T.I. before a hometown crowd.
Instead, it turned into a nightmare with him and two others shot- his best friend killed, and a viral surveillance video he said gets it all wrong. In his first TV news interview, Troy Ave told Lisa Evers he fought for his life. Now, he's fighting for his freedom.
Lisa Evers sat down with Troy Ave to talk about the Irving Plaza shooting that occurred last May, just as his career was about to take off.
"I was going there just to build on my dream. I’m in New York City. Got a show- that made it independent," he said.
Instead, shots were fired inside the green room, leaving his best friend, Ronald "Banga" McPhatter dead. Troy Ave was shot in both his legs and two others were wounded.
It wasn't long before the surveillance video was released by the NYPD. In it, Troy Ave appeared to be the one doing the shooting, but some observers said he was defending himself.
"I would say to you that video doesn't show what's going on. I would love to talk with you more about it, but I’m facing a serious case-jail for 20 years,” he said.
Troy Ave is out on bail with an ankle bracelet, on attempted murder and weapons possession charges. In January, hip hop podcast personality Darryl "Taxstone" Campbell, who long criticized Troy Ave, was arrested on federal gun possession charges for bringing in the weapon that killed McPhatter.
Troy Ave is trying to move forward, despite the heavy charges hanging over his head. He dropped a new album, "Dope Boy Troy" on iTunes, and has been doing some shows, but not nearly as many as before the shooting.
He said he grapples every day with severe pain from the Irving Plaza shooting, and another attempt on his life on Christmas day.
He has also taking legal action of his own, with a civil lawsuit against Irving Plaza for not providing adequate security. Last May, an Irving Plaza spokesperson said there was security, and when the suit was filed, a Live Nation spokesperson declined comment. Attorney Scott Leemon said if everyone had been checked at the VIP entrance, none of this would have happened.
Troy Ave believes he's here for a purpose- to show people that they can overcome any obstacle and the events of this year have only made him stronger
He's even more determined to become a successful hip hop artist and entrepreneur, and never go back to jail.