Eric Holder Jr. found guilty of first-degree murder in death of Nipsey Hussle

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Nipsey Hussle; Eric Holder
Nipsey Hussle; Eric Holder

Tiffany Rose/WireImage; Frederick M. Brown/AP Nipsey Hussle; Eric Holder

Nipsey Hussle's killer has been convicted.

On Wednesday, Eric Holder Jr. was found guilty of first-degree murder in the 2019 shooting of the rising hip-hop star. Holder, 32, had no visible reaction to the verdict, according to the Los Angeles Times, while Hussle's family did not attend the trial and has not publicly commented on the verdict.

Holder will be sentenced Sept. 15 and could face a prison term that would amount to life in jail.

Holder shot Hussle 11 times on March 31, 2019, while the rapper was signing autographs outside a clothing store he owned in the Crenshaw neighborhood of Los Angeles, where he grew up. Hussle, whose real name was Ermias Asghedom, was pronounced dead at a local hospital; he was 33. Holder was arrested in Bellflower, Calif., two days later.

Holder and Hussle, both members of the Rollin 60s gang, had a brief conversation several minutes before the shooting. Throughout the trial there was little question that Holder shot Hussle, as he was identified by several witnesses as the man who approached the rapper that day and also captured by multiple security cameras.

Holder's attorney, Aaron Jansen, lobbied for a manslaughter charge instead of murder, arguing that Hussle had warned Holder there was "paperwork" on him, meaning records existed indicating that Holder had cooperated with police on an investigation. Jansen framed this a form of snitching in front of other gang members, which triggered Holder to the point of shooting Hussle.

Jurors ultimately rejected the framing of the slaying as a sudden crime of passion, instead convicting Holder of murder, as well as attempted voluntary manslaughter and assault for the shooting of two other men who survived.

An ascendant artist at the time of his death, Hussle broke through with his 2013 mixtape Crenshaw, guest-starred as a rapper in the pilot of Crazy Ex-Girlfriend, and collaborated with Jay Z on a song for Judas and the Black Messiah. His sole studio album, Victory Lap, earned a nomination for Best Rap Album at the 2018 Grammys.

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