Alleged Ashanti Stalker: I Was Just Kidding

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    NEWSLETTERS

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    Ashanti doesn't want to have to look over her shoulder for stalkers anymore.

    A would-be rapper accused of sending crude and creepy text messages about Ashanti to the R&B star's parents says he thought his messages were welcome banter between future business partners.

    Devar Hurd told jurors at his Manhattan trial Friday he was just "sex texting" and joking when he sent lewd remarks, graphic photos and a picture of the family home. The sometime model and former car salesman from Griffith, Ind., says the multiplatinum-selling singer's family was planning to do an unspecified business deal with him.

    Ashanti's mother, Tina Douglas, testified Hurd was a stranger who bombarded her with disgusting messages, though she told him to stop. He says she didn't.

    The 31-year-old Hurd is charged with stalking and harassment.