Man Accused of Shooting Nipsey Hussle Charged with Murder, Hires Prosecutor from O.J. Simpson Trial
The man police believe opened fire on Grammy-nominated rapper and activist Nipsey Hussle has been charged with murder.
Eric Holder, 29, was charged on Thursday with one count of murder, two counts of attempted murder and one count of possession of a firearm by a felon, according to a release from the Los Angeles County’s District Attorney’s Office.
Holder entered a plea of not guilty in court on Thursday. The aspiring rapper could face a maximum sentence of life in state prison if convicted.
Holder has hired attorney Chris Darden, who famously was part of the prosecution team in O.J. Simpson’s murder trial, according to CBSLA.
Hussle was gunned down on Sunday afternoon in front of his Los Angeles clothing store, Marathon Clothing Company. Two other men were also shot, though they survived their injuries.
At a press conference on Tuesday afternoon, LAPD Chief Michel R. Moore described a personal dispute between Holder and Hussle, alleging that Holder showed up in front of Hussle’s clothing store multiple times before shooting him.
“Mr. Holder walked up on multiple occasions and engaged in a conversation with Nipsey and the others that were there,” Moore said. “He left and subsequently came back armed with a handgun and purposefully and repeatedly fired, striking and killing Nipsey Hussle.”
Hussle, 33, died from gunshot wounds of both the head and torso, the Los Angeles County Department of Medical Examiner-Coroner confirmed on Monday. “Paramedics were called and [Hussle who was born Ermias Joseph Asghedom] was taken to the hospital where he was pronounced dead at 3:55 p.m.,” the coroner said, in a statement obtained by PEOPLE.
Want to keep up with the latest crime coverage? Click here to get breaking crime news, ongoing trial coverage and details of intriguing unsolved cases in the True Crime Newsletter.
“On March 31, 2019 around 3:20 p.m. three male adults were standing in front of a business in a strip mall in the 3400 block of West Slauson Blvd. The suspect walked up to the men and fired numerous shots at them. The victims were struck and fell to the ground,” read the statement.
“The suspect ran southbound through an adjacent valley to a waiting vehicle. The suspect entered the passenger side of the vehicle and fled the area. The vehicle is a 2016 Chevy Cruze, white four doors, CA license plate 7RJD742. The vehicle was driven by an unidentified female.”
That same night, mass chaos broke out at a vigil for Hussle when multiple people were injured on site.
“We had a series of falls, trips and injuries from the glass and other materials that were there, and that was the vast majority of the injuries that we saw,” Moore stated during a press conference.
A spokeswoman for the Los Angeles Fire Department stated on Monday that at least 19 people were transported to hospitals after Hussle’s memorial, where hundreds of people had gathered to mourn the loss of the rapper and activist, who was a beloved figure in his community and the music world at large.
In the time since Hussle’s death, many have mourned the rapper on social media, including his friends, family, and fans.
“I am completely lost. I’ve lost my best friend, my sanctuary, my protector, my soul,” the actress, 33, wrote. “We are lost without you babe — I have no words.”
Among the photos shared, London included a sweet image of Hussle throwing their 2½-year-old son Kross in the air. London also posted a selfie of Hussle and Kross. It was the first time the actress had shared a photo of their son’s face.