As written by Linda Ikeji
Eric Holder Jr, the man who shot and killed Grammy-nominated rapper Nipsey Hussle, has been convicted of first-degree murder.
Holder, 32, had also been charged with two counts of attempted first-degree murder because two bystanders were hit by gunfire. But the jury found him guilty of two counts of attempted voluntary manslaughter instead.
Hussle, born Ermias Asghedom, was fatally shot outside of his Los Angeles clothing store in March 2019. He was 33.
On Wednesday, July 6, a jury of nine women and three men decided Eric Ronald Holder Jr. acted with premeditation when he opened fire on the musician with a black semiautomatic in one hand and a silver revolver in the other during an afternoon ambush at a strip mall parking lot.
Deputy District Attorney, John McKinney said there was “no doubt” Holder knew he’d kill Hussle, adding that Holder shot Hussle at least 10 times and kicked him in the head before running away, according to the AP.
McKinney said there had been a dispute between the pair Hussle had heard Holder was a snitch and wanted to “clear that up,” the AP reported.
The deputy district attorney said the pair, along with two of Hussle’s friends, had a “cool conversation” with Holder prior to the attack, noting Hussle didn’t have any security with him when he visited his store.
However, prosecutors had a hard time getting witnesses to testify. One police official attributed their reluctance to a fear of being seen as a snitch, according to the AP.
Holder’s attorney, Aaron Jansen told the jury that Hussle’s murder wasn’t planned, and said Holder didn’t mean to shoot the two bystanders. He pinned the attack on “heated passion,” the AP reported.
Last week, Holder was attacked by “multiple individuals” in jail. He was allegedly cut by a razor and taken to the hospital, where he received an MRI and staples in the back of his head, Jansen said.