Suge Knight Arrested for Murder After Fatal Hit-and-Run Incident – Today in Hip-Hop
XXL celebrates 50 years of hip-hop with this moment:
Jan. 30, 2015: Former Death Row Records CEO Marion "Suge" Knight was arrested on this day in 2015, for a fatal hit-and-run that left one person dead and another man hospitalized with severe injuries.
The Suge Knight hit-and-run case started on Jan. 29, 2015, when the former rap mogul reportedly got into a fight on the set of the N.W.A biopic Straight Outta Compton, which was filming in Los Angeles at the time. Knight was eventually turned away by security, citing a restraining order by Dr. Dre, according to The Guardian.
Afterward, Knight drove to Tam's Burgers in Compton, Calif., and got into an altercation with 55-year-old Terry Carter, a purported friend of Knight, and Cle "Bone" Sloan, a former gang member-turned-actor who was working as an adviser for Straight Outta Compton.
According to Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Lieutenant John Corina, Knight and one of the men began throwing punches at each other through the window of Knight's Ford F-150 Raptor pickup truck. Knight put the vehicle in reverse, which knocked one of the victims to the ground. Knight proceeded to drive forward and ran over the first victim and struck the second person before leaving the scene. According to an eyewitness, when Knight pulled off, one of the truck's tires ran over Carter's head.
Carter later died at a hospital. Sloan was hospitalized with two fractured ankles, a serious cut to his head, two torn ligaments in his knees and a shoulder injury.
On the following day, Jan. 30, 2015, Knight surrendered to police and was booked on suspicion of murder. His bail was set at $2 million.
"I feel strongly that Mr. Knight did not do anything wrong in this matter. He was attacked by a number of individuals, that's already been corroborated by certain witnesses," Knight's attorney, James Blatt, told television station KTLA.
Three years later, after the deadly hit-and-run, Suge Knight pleaded no contest to manslaughter on Sept. 20, 2018, avoiding a full-on jury trial. In exchange for his plea, prosecutors requested that Knight serve a sentence of 28 years in prison. The disgraced music mogul faced life in prison.
On Oct. 4, 2019, Judge Ronald S. Coen sentenced Knight to 28 years in prison: 22 years for running over the victim, Terry Carter, and six additional years because it was Knight's third strike under California's three-strikes law. As of December of 2019, Suge Knight is behind bars at Richard J. Donovan Correctional Facility in San Diego, Calif., and won't be eligible for parole until October 2034.