Suge Knight arrested in fatal hit and run

By Drum Digital
31 January 2015

Sheriff's deputies booked the former hip-hop mogul Marion "Suge" Knight on suspicion of murder after they said he hit and killed a man with his pickup truck, seriously injured another and then fled.

By TAMI ABDOLLAH and BRIAN MELLEY

His lawyer said he was an innocent victim who accidentally ran over his friend as he tried to escape a group of attacking thugs.

The incident was the latest in a long line of brushes with death and the law for the 49-year-old founder of Death Row Records, one of the genre's leading labels.

Knight started the label that helped solidify West Coast rap with Dr. Dre, who had been a member of the legendary group N.W.A. The label also launched the career of Snoop Dogg and had Tupac Shakur in the last months of his life.

Knight had gotten in an argument with a man at a location where cast and crew were taking a break from filming a promotional video for the biopic "Straight Outta Compton," about the rise of N.W.A., according to authorities and a person familiar with the project who was not authorized to speak publicly about it and spoke on the condition of anonymity.

Security guards asked Knight to leave, and the argument escalated a short while later at a fast-food restaurant about three miles (five kilometers) away, ending with Knight striking the men and taking off.

"Looks like he drove backwards and struck the victims and drove forwards and struck them again," sheriff's Lt. John Corina said. "The people we talked to say it looked like it was an intentional act."

Terry Carter, 55, Knight's friend who authorities do not believe was involved in the altercation, died at a hospital, Corina said. The other man was identified by his manager as Cle "Bone" Sloan, 51, an actor and film consultant. He was hospitalized in stable condition, said manager Jermaine Shelton.

Defense attorney James Blatt said Knight was called to Tam's Burgers in Compton for a meeting and was attacked by four people as he slowed his pickup truck. The men beat him through his truck window and threatened to kill him.

Corina disputed that account. He said the 51-year-old victim, who had argued earlier with Knight, is the only one who exchanged blows with Knight through the window before he got run over.

"To see the argument happen, it's one thing," said 17-year-old Robert Smith, who was eating in the restaurant. "Seeing the car incident, that was shocking."

Knight surrendered early Friday and was booked on suspicion of murder. He was being held on $2 million bail.

At 6-foot-4 (1.93 meters) and weighing 325 pounds (148 kilograms), Knight's reputation as an imposing figure is credited, in part, with helping create Death Row Records when he strong-armed another label to release Dr. Dre from his contract, said Chuck Creekmur, CEO of allhiphop.com.

Source : Sapa-AP

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