Nipsey Hussle Trial Documents Will Stay Sealed, Judge Decides
The public won’t get to see the transcripts for the trial of Eric Holder, the man accused of shooting and killing rapper and activist Nipsey Hussle. Superior Court Judge Robert J. Perry in Los Angeles ruled that the grand jury transcripts will be sealed. Judge Perry denied a motion from the L.A. Times that, if approved, would open the transcripts up to the public. The L.A. Times argued that the general public has a right to know what’s going on. If the judge would have granted the motion, the transcripts would have been available on May 31. And a number of major publications have already requested copies.
But thanks to Perry’s decision to deny the motion, the transcripts, which are said to shine a light on the prosecution’s proof that Holder was the shooter, will stay sealed for the next three weeks at minimum. Perry said unsealing the transcripts could interfere with public safety.
“I understand that it was a near-riotous situation the day of the shooting,” said Perry, referencing a stampede that took place at the scene where Hussle was shot shortly after the tragedy.
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A crowd of hundreds of people who amassed in front of The Marathon Clothing in South Los Angeles to pay their respects to slain rapper #NipseyHussle stampeded from the scene after a possible stabbing, police say. The peaceful vigil turned chaotic Monday night near the intersection of Crenshaw Boulevard and Slauson Avenue when people began scattering across the packed parking lot. Mourners had gathered since the Grammy-nominated rapper was shot and killed Sunday afternoon. Sky9 was over the scene as fans brought candles, flowers, posters and items of clothing to pay their respects to the 33-year-old rapper around 8 p.m. Monday. At some point, a stabbing occurred. At least six people were stabbed and multiple people were trampled in the stampede, according to Los Angeles police. ??????
Meanwhile, Holder’s attorney Lowynn Young wants the transcripts sealed until after the trial is over in an effort to protect Holder’s chance at a fair trial. The public defender is now the legal counsel for Holder after his former big-name attorney, Christopher Darden, withdrew himself from the case. Darden was a prosecutor in the infamous trial for O.J. Simpson for the murder of his ex-wife, Nicole Brown. See Darden’s statement below:
Meanwhile, the lawyer for the L.A. Times, Rochelle L. Wilcox, said opening the transcripts up to the public wouldn’t harm potential jurors.
“I can’t imagine that the publicity is likely to be so pervasive that it would not be possible to find 12 unbiased jurors.”
The defense has until June 27 to file a new motion with more details.
Holder was charged with murder, attempted murder, and a number of other felonies in the fatal shooting of Hussle on May 9. He pleaded not guilty. Hussle passed away on March 31, shortly after he was shot multiple times in front of his South L.A. store The Marathon.
Do you think the grand jury transcripts should be open to the public? Tell us in the comments.