Rapper Tory Lanez was convicted of assault and other charges Friday for shooting fellow rapper Megan Thee Stallion in the feet during a 2020 argument in the Hollywood Hills.
On its second day of deliberations, the jury convicted of Lanez of all three charges he was facing — assault with a semiautomatic firearm, discharging a firearm with gross negligence and carrying a loaded, unregistered firearm in a vehicle. Jurors also found true allegations that he personally used a firearm and inflicted great bodily injury on Megan Thee Stallion, whose real name is Megan Pete.
Lanez — whose real name is Daystar Peterson — is scheduled to be sentenced Jan. 27.
The rapper was taken into custody immediately after the verdict was read. He was in court wearing a light pink suit with a white turtleneck.
Deputy District Attorney Kathy Ta told jurors in her closing rebuttal argument that Lanez shot Megan Thee Stallion early the morning of July 12, 2020, after she “disrepected” his musical career, but defense attorney George Mgdesyan urged the jury to acquit his client, telling jurors that investigators “jumped to conclusions” and “botched” their investigation into the shooting.
Lanez’s lawyer contended that Megan Thee Stallion’s former friend and personal assistant, Kelsey Harris, was “the one who shot her friend.” He contended that Megan Thee Stallion concocted a fake story about the shooting for publicity reasons, calling her “a liar” and saying it was a “better story” to say that Lanez shot her in the feet, rather than her former friend.
Mgdesyan told jurors that it was a “case about jealousy,” saying the two women had gotten into an argument after finding out that Lanez had slept with both of them and that a neighbor reported witnessing a fistfight between the women after the vehicle stopped on Nichols Canyon Road — the latter of whose testimony jurors heard again read back by the court reporter in the jury room during their deliberations.
Lanez’s attorney questioned why Harris would have had gunshot residue on her, as a test determined that she did, if she wasn’t the person who fired the shots, and he said police failed to test her DNA to check if it could be found on the weapon.
In her rebuttal argument, the prosecutor told jurors it would have been easier for Megan Thee Stallion to accuse Harris of the shooting and that it has “cost her a lot” to accuse Lanez.
“The defendant had a bruised ego because Megan was more successful than him,” Ta said. “She’s just disrespecting his rapping … He had a massive ego and could not handle being disrespected … The defendant shot Megan.”
The prosecutor noted that Harris sent a text message within minutes of the shooting in which she wrote, “Help,” “Tory shot meg” and “911,” and that Lanez was “the only one apologizing” after the shooting.
Lanez declined Wednesday to testify in his own defense.