Tory Lanez denied new trial in 2020 shooting of Megan Thee Stallion

Tuesday, May 9, 2023
Tory Lanez denied retrial in shooting of Megan Thee Stallion
A Los Angeles judge has rejected a bid for a new trial for jailed rapper Tory Lanez, who was convicted of shooting Megan Thee Stallion in the feet after a 2020 Hollywood Hills party.

LOS ANGELES (CNS) -- A Los Angeles judge Tuesday rejected a bid for a new trial for jailed rapper Tory Lanez, who was convicted of shooting hip-hop star Megan Thee Stallion in the feet three years ago in the Hollywood Hills.

Lanez's current attorney, Jose Baez argued Monday that procedural errors, prosecutorial misconduct, discovery violations and ineffective counsel led to his client's conviction in December on one felony count each of assault with a semiautomatic firearm, having a loaded unregistered firearm in a vehicle, and discharging a firearm with gross negligence.

But back in court on Tuesday, Los Angeles Superior Court Judge David Herriford denied the motion for a new trial.

"The court finds no error, prosecutorial misconduct or newly discovered evidence," Herriford said. "Motion denied."

A new sentencing date for the 30-year-old Canadian rap star, whose real name is Daystar Peterson, has been set for June 13, according to the District Attorney's Office. Lanez is facing up to 22 years and eight months in prison.

During a hearing Monday, Baez said Lanez's former trial attorney, George Mgdesyan, did not have enough time to prepare for trial and ultimately "failed" Lanez.

The rapper's defense during the 10-day trial in downtown Los Angeles "was a jumbled, bungled mess," Baez said.

Baez and co-counsel Matthew Barhoma filed their motion for a new trial last month, arguing that certain evidence presented at trial and certain witness statements were prejudicial to their client, including an Instagram post and a photo of Lanez's gun tattoo.

In a posting on Instagram last month, Lanez insisted he was "wrongfully convicted" of shooting Megan Thee Stallion in July 2020.

"Today I take a stance as an innocent Black man, wrongfully convicted of a crime I did not commit," Lanez said in the Instagram post addressed to Los Angeles County District Attorney George Gascón.

In an audio recording that accompanied the Instagram post, Lanez alleged that he "was completely robbed and deprived of a fair trial" and that he watched prosecutors unlawfully misuse their authority to hide and suppress any and all exculpatory evidence that exonerates me and furthers my

innocence."

Lanez has remained behind bars since he was ordered to be taken into custody Dec. 23 shortly after the jury's verdict was read.

Jurors deliberated about seven hours before finding him guilty of the three felony counts.

During the trial, Megan Thee Stallion testified that Lanez told her to "dance, bitch," and shot her in the feet during a July 12, 2020, argument following a get-together at Kylie Jenner's home. She said she had no doubt that Lanez fired the shots, and that he later offered her $1 million not to say anything.

As Lanez was being escorted back to lockup after Monday's hearing, he turned toward the judge and said, "Please don't ruin my life, sir."