Witness: Puffy Had a Gun

For the first time in the weapons possession and bribery trial of Sean “Puffy” Combs, a witness testified Friday that the rap entrepreneur had a gun at a Manhattan nightclub during a Dec. 1999 shooting incident that left three people injured, reports PEOPLE. Previous witnesses, including Combs’s bodyguard Leonard Curtis Howard, have testified they never saw the rap star with a firearm at the Times Square nightclub. But college student Tarnisha Smith, 24, said she heard shots inside Club NY and then saw both Combs and his rap prot g , Jamal “Shyne” Barrow, with guns. (Barrow, also known as “Shyne,” is a co-defendant of Combs’s in the case and is charged with attempted murder.) Smith said Puffy and Barrow began arguing with another man “about money,” and then she saw a spark come out Barrow’s gun and heard four to five shots. She then said she saw “something black” in Puffy’s hand and thought it was a gun. Combs shook his head. “Did you see Puffy shoot the gun?” prosecutor Matthew Bogdanos asked. “No I did not,” Smith answered. “At that time I thought it was a gun, what I saw was something black.” She later testified that Combs ran out of the club wielding a gun. Meanwhile, Combs’s attorney, Benjamin Brafman, suggested that Smith has a selective memory during his cross-examination of the witness. When Smith again said that she saw something black by Puffy’s side, Brafman asked Smith what Puffy and his girlfriend Jennifer Lopez were wearing that night. “I can’t remember, I really cannot remember,” Smith said. Puffy shook his head several times. Brafman then hypothetically asked the jury: if Smith couldn’t remember what they were wearing, how could she remember he had a gun? A second witness, Rashane Devalle, 27, also contradicted Smith’s testimony when he said that Puffy left the club holding Lopez’s hand — indicating that he couldn’t have been holding a gun.

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