Holder, a 29-year-old aspiring rapper, was charged with one count of murder, two counts of attempted murder and one count of possession of a firearm by a felon during a court appearance Thursday. In its criminal complaint, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office also alleges that Holder personally used a firearm and caused great bodily injury and death. If convicted, Holder faces a possible maximum sentence of life in state prison.
Hussle, real name Ermias Asghedom, was gunned down in South Los Angeles on Sunday outside of his store, Marathon Clothing. He was 33. Two other men were also shot, but survived.
Holder was apprehended earlier this week in Bellflower, located in southeast Los Angeles County, after the LAPD asked for the public’s help in tracking him down. He has been held on $7 million bail.
“We believe with probable cause and a degree of certainty … that Mr. Holder walked up on multiple occasions and engaged in a conversation with Nipsey and the others that were there,” LAPD Chief Michel Moore said in a press conference Tuesday morning. “He left and then came back and subsequently came back armed with a handgun and purposefully and repeatedly fired, striking and killing Nipsey Hussle.”
Although Holder is allegedly affiliated with a street gang, Moore said he did not believe the dispute to be “related to rivalries between gangs.” (Hussle had spoken of his previous affiliation with the Rollin’ 60s Crips.) Instead, police believe the motive was personal.
“We believe this to be a dispute between Mr. Hussle and Mr. Holder,” Moore added. “I’m not going to go into the conversations, but it appears to be a personal matter between the two of them in regards to a dispute and I’ll leave it at that.”
Herman Douglas, who described himself as Hussle’s business partner, told the Los Angeles Times he witnessed the rapper shake hands with Holder before the fatal incident.
“Me and Nipsey was talking, and the dude that shot him, he came and shook our hands. Said he was a rapper and this old bulls***,” Douglas revealed. “Shook our hands, the dude went and got his burger. He left. … I left him maybe, approximately three seconds that I had left Nipsey and the dude came and shot him.”
Douglas doesn’t believe there was any personal “beef” between the two and that the motive was jealousy.
“What seems to be a less talented rapper had envy and hate in his eyes,” Douglas speculated. “It was nothing else. It was no motive. It was no beef.”
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