Nicki Minaj has been causing quite a stir online with her new alleged boyfriend, Kenny "Zoo" Petty. The rap queen first started posting about Petty on her Instagram in late November, but it wasn't until her birthday (December 8) that she made their relationship Instagram official.

Almost as soon as she posted the photos and videos from her birthday getaway in Turks and Caicos, reports came out about the 40-year-old's well-documented criminal past, including being convicted of attempted rape and manslaughter, and doing time for both of those convictions.

But just who is Kenny Petty, exactly?

It would appear Nicki has a thing for bad boys, and Petty seems like the real deal. Perhaps we should start at the beginning.

While Petty might be new to us, TMZ reports he and Minaj have known each other since she was a teenager living in Queens, New York. Sources told the tabloid that the pair dated when she was 16 years old and she calls him one of her first loves.

Petty's trouble with the law started when he was just 16 years old. In April of 1995 he was convicted of first-degree attempted rape. The victim in the case was 16 years old and sources close to the couple say he was dating the victim before her mother, who did not approve of the relationship, filed charges.

Petty served nearly four years for that conviction, but unfortunately, that wasn't his last time in prison. Minaj's new man reportedly served another seven years, from 2006 to 2013, for a first-degree manslaughter conviction. During his second prison stint, he racked up numerous violations, including violent conduct violations for threatening and fighting, as well as disobeying direct orders and creating a disturbance.

While fans have been vocally upset by Nicki Minaj dating Kenny Petty, she has acknowledged his past. "He was 15, she was 16... in a relationship. But go awf, internet. y'all can't run my life. Y'all can't even run y'all own life," the rapper wrote on Instagram in reply to a fan comment.

Sources close to Minaj have told TMZ that she believes Petty has matured in the years since they first met, and that friends have never seen her happier. According to the outlet, the couple have even started talking about marriage and kids together, after just a few months of dating.

Whatever happens we wish Nicki all the best and hope she's happy!

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