Los Angeles Judge Ronald S. Coen has sided with the prosecution and set rap mogul Marion “Suge” Knight’s bail at $25 million during his bail review hearing on Friday.
Knight collapsed after the hearing, and was taken to the hospital — the result, his attorney, Matt Fletcher, suggested of Knight’s inability to get proper treatment in jail, as he suffers from diabetes.
Knight allegedly ran over two men in a Compton parking lot in January while out on bail in another case. Terry Carter, 55, died as a result of the incident, and the other, Cle Denyale Sloan, suffered serious injuries.
He is charged with murder, attempted murder and two counts of hit and run and an allegation that he committed a serious and violent felony while on bail in another pending case. If convicted, Knight faces life in prison.
His legal team contends that Knight was struggling to get away from “three gangbangers,” in the words of Fletcher.
“Mr Knight was attacked,” Fletcher told the judge. “Their (prosecutors) argument literally is, ‘He should have sat there and gotten more f—cked up.'”
Fletcher even suggested that prosecutors were trying to cast him like a character out of the new hit series “Empire.”
“It’s like ‘Empire’ again,” he said. “They believe this guy is out there running all of these criminal enterprises.”
Knight’s bail initially was revoked due to concerns that he posed a flight risk, that he is a candidate under the state’s three-strikes law, and because of the possibility of witness intimidation.
Prosecutors had argued that the bail should be set at $25 million because of Knight’s past criminal record, citing police reports showing past links to robberies, assaults and battery. They provided nearly 300 pages of evidence and arguments. They contend that Knight was a part of an extortion scheme targeting new artists or rappers who come to Los Angeles, and that he would extract a “tax’ from them, according to the Associated Press.
The AP also reported that prosecutors also included the summary of a police report from last year in which an unidentified person claimed Knight made a threat over the upcoming Universal film “Straight Outta Compton,” which is about the rise of NWA. Prosecutors claim Knight was upset that he was not compensated for the use of his likeness in the movie and that he warned that he would go after former NWA members Dr. Dre and Ice Cube.
Knight is the co-founder of Death Row Records.
At a press conference after the hearing, Fletcher cited reports that Sloan, the first man that Knight struck, later admitted that he assaulted Knight. He contends that Knight was lured to the scene.
Fletcher also complained about Knight’s treatment in incarceration, complaining that even prisoners “at Guantanamo Bay are treated better.”