Kerry Lathan, one of the two men shot alongside Nipsey Hussle last month, is speaking out about his injuries and being arrested after the shooting.
Lathan held a news conference on Wednesday, April 22, in Los Angeles. He arrived in a wheelchair after being shot in the back, and said doctors fear removing the bullet could lead to more damage.
“I have a bullet in my back and a fragment of it broke off, and is near my spine. They said ‘if we take it out, there’s a possibility you could be paralyzed,'” Lathan recalled in a video posted by CBS Los Angeles.
Lathan spent 25 years in prison for murder and has been on parole for seven months. He said he’s been trying to put his life back together, but everything changed when he went to Hussle’s Marathon clothing store to buy a shirt on March 31.
“He told me that he would have the shirt that I needed the next week and I said okay. And as I turned, it was all bad,” Lathan said about Hussle.
After the shooting, Lathan was arrested for violating his parole by associating with Hussle, a known former gang member.
“I had no idea of any of that,” he stated. “I know they said he was a Rollin’ 60, but that’s not what he is now. He’s a celebrity, I took a picture with a celebrity. I met him once, took a selfie.”
Lathan’s attorney said her client had no idea Hussle would be at the store that day. Lathan added that a lot of the information reported about his involvement with the hip-hop star was incorrect. He barely knew Hussle and did not go to pick up free clothes. He went on to call the shooting “devastating.”
Lathan was eventually released from jail amid public outcry from residents and activists, who said Hussle had changed and was helping to improve the community. Still, Lathan worries that authorities could come after him again, and alleges that the California parole board has left him without proper housing and medical care.
“After you serve your time and you learn better and you do better, you’re still jeered at and poked at, that’s him, that’s him, that’s him right there,” Lathan said.