Viral Rapper Says He’s Innocent After Kidnapping Allegations

A viral Texas rapper is claiming his innocence after being accused of kidnapping a pregnant woman and keeping her locked in his garage.

Lee Carter, 52, better known by the stage name Viper, was charged last week with kidnapping after Houston police found a woman inside his garage who claimed that he had held her there for years, according to a complaint obtained by HuffPost.

George Powell, Carter’s lawyer, told CNN a different story, claiming that the two were in a consensual relationship together and share a 3-year-old child.

Powell told the outlet that witnesses who know the pair “will have ample evidence to demonstrate that … they’ve been in a relationship for years.”

Lee Carter, or Viper, via Instagram.
Lee Carter, or Viper, via Instagram.

According to the complaint, the woman was rescued in April 2023 after managing to send a message to police dispatch on Carter’s laptop.

When police arrived at Carter’s home, they found the woman weighing 70 pounds and allegedly locked inside the garage. The garage was furnished with a makeshift toilet and a mattress covered in fresh vomit, according to the complaint.

The woman told officers that Carter approached her years ago to give her $1 when she was pregnant and panhandling on the street. Carter later returned to ask if she needed help before telling her to get in his car and, “against her better judgement,” the woman said she left with him, according to the complaint.

The woman told officers that Carter repeatedly forced her to do drugs, including crack cocaine, and have sex with him. During this time she was only fed “chips and snacks,” the complaint said.

The woman recalled one instance where she attempted to escape when police and fire department personnel were called to Carter’s home, but she was taken to a hospital instead where Carter picked her up, the complaint said.

According to NBC News, two months after the woman was rescued from the house, another woman was found dead there. Catherine Roberts, 61, was reportedly discovered inside Carter’s Houston home on July 5.

Jedediah Beights, Carter’s neighbor, told NBC News that Roberts was living in the same garage that held the first woman.

“Roberts died from alcoholic liver disease and hepatitis C, complicated by internal bleeding,” NBC News reported, citing medical examiner records.

Houston police told the outlet that Roberts’ death is not connected to the kidnapping investigation and that Carter is not facing charges for it.

After he was accused of kidnapping, Carter denied the allegations against him, claiming in multiple social media posts that he’s innocent.

He also said he had only lived in the Houston home for 13 months. According to corporate records, Carter owns and operates a moving company registered to the address where police found the woman.

As Viper, Carter has amassed millions of streams online and averages more than 50,000 monthly listeners on Spotify.

In a statement posted on social media, Outsider Records, a label associated with Carter’s Viper persona, said that it was “lost for words” amid the allegations against him. The label added that it would end all contact with Carter.

“I want to say I had no knowledge or involvement in what he was doing,” the statement read.

It continued by saying that Outsider Records would shut down permanently after processing purchases and refunds.

“I originally planned for Viper to not receive any money from sales unless he was found innocent, but due to possible legal threats I will pay him his cut at the end of this month,” read a separate statement on the label’s website, adding that some of the money from sales would also be donated “to either the victim or charity.”

Carter is set to appear in court Feb.13, and his attorney said that he will plead not guilty. Powell and a spokesperson for Outsider Records did not immediately respond to HuffPost’s requests for comment.

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