Former rap mogul Marion “Suge” Knight was taken to a hospital again Thursday, delaying his arraignment on a criminal threats charge stemming from the alleged robbery of a camera from a paparazzo in Beverly Hills.
The 49-year-old Knight, who is also awaiting trial on murder and attempted murder charges for allegedly running over two men in Compton, complained of stomach pains after being transferred from jail to the Airport Branch Courthouse this morning.
His attorney told the website TMZ.com Knight also complained Wednesday of stomach pains, which apparently can be traced back to August, when Knight was shot six times at a Los Angeles-area nightclub. Knight was returned to jail this afternoon.
Knight’s arraignment on the criminal threats charge was postponed until April 8. The charge alleges that Knight threatened the female photographer in Beverly Hills on Sept. 5 — the same date of the alleged robbery. He was charged in the robbery case last year, along with comedian Micah “Katt” Williams, who is also due in court April 8.
Knight remains jailed without bail while awaiting a March 20 bail hearing on the murder case. He is charged with one count each of murder and attempted murder and two counts of hit-and-run for allegedly running down two men in Compton on Jan. 29, killing one and injuring the other following an argument.
He was initially held in lieu of $2 million bail, which was revoked Feb. 2 because he was deemed a possible flight risk and a three-strikes candidate. According to the Sheriff’s Department, “possible witness intimidation issues and a criminal past” were also factors.
After a court appearance in the murder case Feb. 3, Knight was hospitalized after experiencing what was described as chest pains and a possible panic attack. He was returned to jail two days later.
Knight allegedly drove his pickup truck backward and forward, killing Terry Carter, 55, and injuring 51-year-old Cle Stone, at 2:55 p.m. Jan. 29 in the parking lot of Tam’s Burgers in the 1200 block of West Rosecrans Avenue near Central Avenue.
Lt. John Corina, a sheriff’s homicide detective, said investigators believe Knight intentionally struck the men and that he was not acting out of a reasonable fear.
Corina said Knight had gotten into an argument at a film shoot for a promotional video for “Straight Out of Compton,” a biopic of the Compton rap group N.W.A. Knight was told to leave. The argument resumed about 20 minutes later at the eatery about three miles away.
Knight’s attorney at the time, James Blatt, confirmed Knight was behind the wheel of the pickup that struck the men, but said he acted out of fear in trying to escape from as many as four people who attacked him. Blatt also claimed that Knight had been unaware that he hit two men with the pickup, which was later found in a Westwood parking lot.
The criminal complaint against Knight, who could be incarcerated for life if convicted in the murder case, includes an allegation that he committed a serious and violent felony while out on bail in an unrelated robbery case, as well as use of a deadly weapon and causing great bodily injury allegations.
Knight has prior convictions, making this a third-strike case, according to the complaint.
Knight, a Compton native and former football player, co-founded Death Row Records, which in its heyday in the early 1990s generated revenues of up to $100 million per year.
He helped launch some of rap’s biggest acts, including Dr. Dre, Snoop Dogg and Tupac Shakur, and was with Shakur the night he was slain in 1996. His Death Row Records pushed West Coast Rap to prominence at a time when the genre was dominated by East Coast rappers.
Knight served five years in prison for assault and federal weapons violations and, after his release in 2001, spent another 10 months behind bars for violating parole by hitting a Hollywood nightclub valet.
— City News Service