Nipsey Hussle Murder Trial Ends With Conviction

Eric R. Holder Jr. and Hussle, 33, had known each other for years
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Jul 6, 2022 2:00 PM CDT
Nipsey Hussle Murder Trial Ends With Conviction
Eric Holder Jr. sits in a courtroom for his verdicts at Los Angeles Superior Court in Los Angeles, Wednesday, July 6, 2022. Jurors found Holder guilty of first-degree murder Wednesday for the 2019 fatal shooting of rapper Nipsey Hussle.   (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong, Pool)

Jurors on Wednesday found a 32-year-old man guilty of first-degree murder in the 2019 fatal shooting of rapper Nipsey Hussle. The Los Angeles County jury also found Eric R. Holder Jr. guilty of two counts of attempted voluntary manslaughter instead of the two attempted murder counts prosecutors had sought for two other men who were hit by gunfire at the scene. Holder, wearing a blue suit and face mask, stood up in the small courtroom next to his lawyer as the verdict was read. He had no visible reaction, reports the AP.

The verdict brings an end to a legal saga that has lasted more than three years and a trial that was often delayed because of the pandemic. Holder and Hussle, 33, had known each other for years—they grew up as members of the same South Los Angeles street gang—when a chance meeting outside the rapper’s Los Angeles clothing store led to the shooting and his death. The evidence against Holder was overwhelming, from eyewitnesses to surveillance cameras from local businesses that captured his arrival, the shooting, and his departure. His attorney did not even deny that he was the shooter but urged jurors to find him guilty of the lesser charge of voluntary manslaughter.

The shooting followed a conversation the two men had about rumors that Holder had been acting as an informant for authorities. Holder's lawyer, Aaron Jansen, said that being publicly accused of being a "snitch" by a person as prominent as Hussle brought on a "heat of passion" in Holder that made him not guilty of first-degree murder. But Deputy District Attorney John McKinney argued that the nine minutes between the conversation and the shooting allowed more than enough time for the killing to be premeditated, a requirement for first-degree murder. The jury apparently agreed.

(Read more Nipsey Hussle stories.)

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