Rap mogul Suge Knight charged with hit-and-run murder

Hip hop producer turned himself in to face charge he murdered one man and injured another

Suge Knight
(Image credit: 2002 Getty Images)

Hip hop impresario Suge Knight has been charged with murder after a hit-and-run incident in Los Angeles. The 49-year-old, real name Marion Knight, turned himself in on Friday but was not charged until today, says the Washington Post.

Footage shows Knight, who started out on a career as an American football player, smoking a thick cigar as he hands himself over to the police.

In a lengthy account of the incident, which may lead Knight back to prison - he has already spent years inside for other incidents - The Guardian quotes an un-named source who believes the killing was accidental.

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The incident, which took place last Thursday, began when Knight arrived at a location in the LA suburb of Compton where a trailer for a new film about seminal rap group NWA was being filmed with stars Ice Cube and Dr Dre.

In the 1990s, Dre was signed to Death Row Records, the influential label Knight co-founded - but the two men fell out and have not been close for years, says the Guardian. Knight was not allowed on set by security guards.

What happened next is uncertain - but the day ended with Knight running over two men with his car: Cle ‘Bone’ Sloan, a Bloods gang member working as security on the film, and Terry Carter. Carter was killed, Sloan injured.

According to the Guardian’s source, Carter was a friend of Knight’s who was trying to make peace. The source says that makes it unlikely that Knight would deliberately have attacked him.

Knight’s defence is that he drove off in an attempt to evade an attack from four men - and had no idea he had injured anybody in the process. He did not stop after the accident.

Knight became better known to a wider audience after he appeared in Nick Broomfield’s documentary Biggie and Tupac in 2002, which looked at the deaths of the two 1900s hip hop stars. The film was based largely on the theories of an LAPD detective, Russell Poole, who was removed from the case.

Poole alleges in the film that he was discouraged from investigating a theory that Knight had ordered the killing of his former star performer, Tupac Shakur. Poole claims there was police collusion in the killing.

Knight has not had a good year. In August 2014, he was shot six times after an altercation at a party hosted by R&B star Chris Brown. The shots were thought to have been aimed at either Brown or Justin Bieber, said the New York Daily News.

If he is found guilty of murder, it will be Knight’s longest stay in jail since 2001, when he was released after serving almost five years for violating parole he had been serving for beating up a Crips gang member in LA in 1996.

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