Lawyers who once represented Marion “Suge” Knight in his murder case have been indicted on conspiracy charges to bribe potential witnesses and circumvent the justice system in hopes of freeing their one-time client, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office announced.
A grand jury returned the indictment against Matthew Fletcher and Thaddeus Culpepper on Jan. 24 for one count each of conspiracy to commit bribery, conspiracy to commit subornation of perjury, conspiracy to commit obstruction of justice and accessory after the fact.Culpepper also faces two other conspiracy charges, while Fletcher is charged with one additional count of perjury.
The indictment was unsealed yesterday. Arraignment is scheduled for March 16 in Department 100 of the Foltz Criminal Justice CenterDeputy District Attorney Stefan Mrakich of the Public Integrity Division is prosecuting the case.
Knight is awaiting trial for allegedly killing 55-year-old Terry Carter and injuring Cle “Bone” Sloan who he hit with his truck in a Compton parking lot on Jan. 29, 2015. He also has pending robbery and criminal threats cases.
In April of 2017, according to a written statement prepared by former LAPD Detective Russell Poole (subject of the USA TV Series “Unsolved”) and released after his death, Culpepper had informed Poole and others, including attorneys present, that Knight had specifically endorsed the concepts and theories in the 2017 documentary “Tupac Assassination: Battle for Compton.” .
At its core, “Battle for Compton” bucks the claim that Knight was a suspect in the killings of Tupac Shakur and Christopher “Biggie Smalls” Wallace, and presents the theory that Knight was an intended target in the Shakur Killing and blamed for the Wallace killing by several associates of Death Row Records, including alleged involvement by Knight’s former wife and security director in both shootings.
Shortly after the April 2017 release of Poole’s claims- including Culpepper statements on his client’s behalf endorsing “Compton”- went “viral”, Culpepper called news agencies denying Poole’s posthumous claims, and threatening to sue those who might carry the Poole claims- as “fake news.”
The Los Angeles Times claims Culpepper also chastised the district attorney’s office and wrote to them in response to allegations of Knight using his attorneys to contact the media, ‘The facts in this case are extremely compelling and overwhelmingly prove Mr. Knight’s innocence. No amount of prosecutorial spin or mudslinging will change that!’
Now that it appears Culpepper may have been doing more than simply amplifying Knight’s endorsement of “Compton” (which happen to provide possible background into Knight’s latest trial); prosecutors now claim Culpepper agreed to pay an informant for “his sworn testimony that he was present at the time of the crime and [witnessed] evidence favorable to the defense.
This is no surprise to the producers of “Compton.”
“Culpepper was a guy out there doing whatever he could- legally and maybe not so legally- to portray Knight as a victim in his latest trial,” said “Compton” Director RJ Bond.” And even though he tried to deny making that claim- which he made to many people, including Poole, we think Culpepper said what he said, and looks to be 100% in keeping with what he has been arrested for. Of course he will deny these allegations too.
“But we know he said it, we believe Knight’s current woes may tie to 20 year old events and Culpepper’s statement to Poole moves fluently with what they are trying to do as a defense team. They just look to have stepped into something they can’t threaten their way out of.
“We loved the endorsement because it appeared to be congruent with our message. If you want to know why, watch the movie.
“This is the latest in a series of Criminal issues plaguing the principal players of Death Row Records.”
In March 2018, former Death Row Records head of Security in both the Wallace and Shakur Killings, and alleged person of interest in both, stands to enter a plea in US Federal Court on charges of Drug Trafficking and Money Laundering; both allegations also heavily discussed in “Compton”Watch “Tupac Assassination: Battle for Compton” peel back the layers and reveal the context for the shootings of Shakur and Wallace. It is available worldwide at retailers and onlin
Watch “Tupac Assassination: Battle for Compton” peel back the layers and reveal the context for the shootings of Shakur and Wallace.