One of the men was injured when Nipsey Hustle Brutally executed in a south Los Angeles parking lot three years ago, Monday testified that once the barrage of gunfire ended, he heard what were likely to be the famous rapper’s last words.
“Shoot me. Like . said Hustle He was bleeding on the ground Witness Shermy Villanueva, 47, told the jury, outside his Marathon clothing store after the shooter fled the scene.
Villanueva said he and his uncle Keri Lathan were talking to Hussle as they stood between two parked cars seconds before the attacker – identified by prosecutors as Eric Holder Jr. – and started shooting. “I heard him, and then I saw Nipsey fall,” Villanova said, referring to the barrage of shots. “When I looked and saw Nipsey, I started running.”
Villanueva, who said he works in the “medical field,” described feeling something hit his belt buckle. He said he later noticed bleeding but eventually refused a request from paramedics to go to the hospital for treatment that day.
During that Opening statement last weekD., Deputy District Attorney John McKinney warned jurors that getting Villanueva to open up about the incident “will be a challenge.” McKinney said Villanueva grew up in the south Los Angeles community where the shooting took place, an area where the 1960s Rollin gang prevented people from cooperating with law enforcement of any kind.
In fact, Villanueva’s testimony was so kind and tenacious, it was hard to hear at times. He refrained from describing his reactions and gave very dry answers, mostly yes or no. Asked by Holder’s defense attorney, Aaron Janssen, what happened when he turned around and saw his uncle also on the ground with a gunshot wound, Villanueva appeared medically.
“It was like, ‘I’m hurt too.'” In his testimony, Villanueva testified that we were paying attention to Nipsey, and he was saying: “I was also shot.” “I told him, ‘Don’t move’, because he said he had a hit in his back, and it could be a spinal injury.”
Villanueva said he never heard the shooter utter any words before he opened fire. He testified that he had no sense that anyone was in danger before the fatal attack.
Holder, 32, has pleaded not guilty to one count of Hussle’s murder and two counts of attempted first-degree murder injuring Villanueva and Lathan. Jansen said in his opening statement that Holder attacked “in the heat of passion,” meaning that his actions were not prior to meditation.
Prosecutors allege that Holder fired at least 10 shots at Hussell from a black semi-automatic pistol in one hand and a smaller silver pistol in the other, killing the 33-year-old posthumous Grammy winner near the intersection of Sloson Street and Crenshaw Street on March 31, 2019 .
Ingrid Caston testified on Monday, recalling how she was sitting at the driver’s side of a parked Audi, eating some food, when gunfire erupted a few feet away.
“I heard gunshots, and it sounded like fireworks. I said to the lady who was in the car with me, ‘Are those fireworks?’” Everyone started to disperse, and a few people ran. Nipsey, I saw him fall.”
Caston said she saw the shooter and thought it was the same man she had previously seen in the parking lot, walking around without a shirt. I heard “more than seven” shots. “I was so focused. I watch the disbelief, and then when he finished, he kicked him and after he ran next to me. I was shocked, looking. This is how it happened.”
Brianita Nicholson, 35, took the witness stand on Monday afternoon and testified that she acted as an unintended getaway driver for Holder on the day of the murders.
The home health care aide said she met Holder while working as a driver at Lyft and began hanging out with him in the weeks leading up to the shooting in what she described as a casual, no-strings dating relationship. She said on the day of Hussle’s death, Holder directed her to the parking lot of The Marathon and she had a conversation with the famous musician about “slander”.
“Did I say I snitched?” asked Holder Hussle, according to her testimony.
“He doesn’t sound crazy,” she told jurors, describing Holder’s voice as “loud” but not “aggressive.”
Nicholson said Hussle took a picture with her, and after a while, she and Holder drove around the block. She said Holder began loading bullets into a black semi-automatic pistol while sitting in her car. She testified that she asked him to raise the gun, and he did. Shortly thereafter, while they were parked in a nearby alley so Holder could eat chili cheese fries, Holder jumped out of the car and told her not to leave until he got back, she said. She testified that she watched as Holder turned a corner toward the Hussle store and then heard several gunshots. Then Holder reappeared and was told to drive in a “stern” voice, she said.
So I said, “What happened?” It was like, “Lead!” [He said] I talk a lot. I testified that it was as if he was going to slap me.
Nicholson said she brought Holder back to Long Beach and didn’t hear that Hussle had been killed until later that night.
During his opening statement, McKinney called Nicholson naive.
The judge who oversaw the trial ended Nicholson’s testimony early Monday because the air conditioning in the crowded courtroom was not working. One of the technicians who arrived to fix the problem said the room temperature was above 82 degrees.
McKinney says rolling rock He expects to finish his evidence portion of the case by the end of the week, ahead of schedule.