Marion Hugh ‘Suge’ Knight sits for a hearing in his murder case on July 7, 2015
“I’ve never paid anyone, period, end of story,” lawyer Matt Fletcher told the Daily News ahead of a court hearing on the matter.
“As far as I know, (witnesses) haven’t been paid by anyone,” he said. “I don’t believe Suge Knight has the money to pay anyone.”
The Los Angeles District Attorney filed paperwork Wednesday claiming they have a recorded jail call in which Knight and Fletcher discussed paying large sums to witnesses who would say Knight was the victim of an armed assault before he hit two men with his Ford Raptor truck outside a Compton restaurant in January 2015, killing one of them.
Suge Knight is in jail awaiting trial for the blatant killing of producer and record label owner, Terry Carter [photo], who he ran over with his truck, Jan 29 2015
Knight’s defense attorney Matt Fletcher,[right], has responded to the allegations, saying: “As far as I know, [witnesses] haven’t been paid by anyone”.
“I don’t believe Suge Knight [right] has the money to pay anyone.”
Terry Carter was the founder and owner of Heavyweight Records was struck and killed by Knight’s truck on the afternoon of Jan 29, 2015 outside Tam’s Burgers near Central and East Rosecrans avenues in Compton, Los Angeles.
Authorities said the incident followed an argument on the set of a promo for the N.W.A. biopic “Straight Outta Compton.” The argument may have spilled over to the popular burger stand, police said.
Ironically, Carter had been at the film shoot merely to support his friend, rapper Ice Cube, whose real name is O’Shea Jackson, according to his friends. Ice Cube and Carter worked on a soundtrack for the film “The Players Club.”
Suge Knight [right], allegedly made death threats against “Straight Outta Compton” director F. Gary Gray in Aug 2014. Knight has been indicted for the death threats against Gray
“That’s a fair motherf—ing investment, you know, 20, 25 thousand dollars to pay to these motherf—ers to get home?” Fletcher allegedly said during the call on March 16, 2015, according to the complaints sheet filed by the DA’s office.
Fletcher claimed he was not referring to witnesses at that point but members of a biker group who supposedly had personal cellphone video related to the parking lot confrontation.
“We were sending people out to try to find versions of the videotape,” Fletcher told The News.
“It would be a wonderful investment. TMZ would pay them. Radar would pay them,” he added, suggesting the five-figure payments would actually come from media outlets.
Suge Knight, who co-founded Death Row Records with Dr. Dre after quitting NWA, was reported to be unhappy with his depiction in “Straight Outta Compton.”
“They’re taking it out of context,” he said of the jail call excerpt included in the DA’s filing.
Prosecutors are asking for an “inquiry” into Fletcher, calling it a precautionary measure to sidestep the possibility Knight might claim in a future appeal that the lawyer acted inappropriately.
They claim Fletcher and Knight also worked together to violate a court order and sell the main surveillance video of the parking lot incident to TMZ.com.
Richard Taylor plays Suge Knight in a scene from the 2015 film “Straight Outta Compton.” Knight was reportedly, unhappy with the portrayal of him in the movie
Suge Knight sits for a hearing in his murder case in 2015
They say Knight, in a jail recording, gave the green light to TMZ.com to buy the video for a whopping $55,000.
Remonstrating the accusation” “They’re accusing me of trying to sell the tape to TMZ,” Fletcher said. “I wasn’t even on the case then. I didn’t have the videotape.”The lawyer said
he planned to ask the court why prosecutors were even allowed to listen to his calls with Knight in the first place.
Prosecutors said in their filing they were given access to certain calls involving Fletcher if Knight first called a third party and then Fletcher was conferenced in. They said the third party allegedly broke the expectation of attorney-client privilege.
“I find that to be rather disquieting,” Fletcher said.
‘Death Row’: Knight seems set to get comfortable in the orange suit as the many trials for murder and death threats start to unwind.
Last week, Marion ‘Suge’ Knight pled not guilty to charges he tried to shake down, then threatened bodily harm on director F. Gary Gray over Knight’s depiction in Gray’s 2015 film “Straight Outta Compton.”
Prosecutors claim Knight threatened Gray, both verbally and via text, with bodily harm on August 8, 2014, if he did not acquiesce to his demands for either financial compensation or a stop to the film’s production.
Knight has been in jail 2 ½ years as he awaits trial for the alleged murder of Terry Carter and attempted murder of Cle “Bone” Sloan. His lawyers have maintained that Death Row Records boss, Knight, was attacked by a gun-toting Sloan in the Compton restaurant parking lot before Knight hit the gas on his truck to escape, hitting them both.
His murder trial has been set for January 2018.