After multiple delays, the man convicted of fatally shooting Nipsey Hussle and injuring two bystanders outside the rapper’s clothing store in 2019, was sentenced Wednesday in Los Angeles to 60 years to life in prison.
Eric Holder Jr. learned his fate as Superior Court Judge H. Clay Jacke II handed down the sentence just before noon in a downtown L.A. courtroom.
Holder showed no emotion as the sentence was read, the Associated Press reported.
Before the judge announced how much time Holder would spend in state prison, the court heard from one of Hussle’s friends and a letter was read from Holder’s father. Holder was not eligible for the death penalty.
In July 2022, a jury found Holder guilty of first-degree murder, two counts each of attempted voluntary manslaughter and assault with a firearm, and one count of possession of a firearm by a felon, as previously reported.
Holder’s sentencing was delayed after his lawyer asked for the longtime gang member’s murder conviction to be reduced to manslaughter due to an “inconsistency” in the verdict. The attorney claimed jurors delivered a contradictory verdict, but a judge rejected the request in December.
The LAPD said during the investigation that 33-year-old Hussle, born Ermias Asghedom, was signing autographs and talking to friends outside his Marathon Clothing store in South L.A., when he was approached by Holder and shot dead on March 31, 2019.
Holder fled the scene and was arrested in nearby Bellflower two days later.
According to Deputy Dist. Atty. John McKinney, Holder became angry when Hussle accused him of “snitching.” It was revealed in the trial that Holder left the clothing store after speaking with Hussle and returned a short time later with a gun in each hand.
McKinney told the court Hussle was “shot literally from the bottom of his feet to the top of his head.” The autopsy showed the rapper was struck by bullets 11 times. Police said Holder then kicked Hussle as he lay dying on the ground.
During the trial, Holder’s defense attorney admitted that his client “shot and killed” Hussle, but argued that the crime occurred in the “heat of passion,” which is why he claimed Holder should be convicted of manslaughter.
Hussle and Holder grew up in the same Los Angeles neighborhood, where both men had been part of a street gang. But McKinney noted that as Hussle got older he “wanted to change the neighborhood” that he grew up in, became a community activist and frequently helped others.
The Grammy Award-winning “Double Up” rapper left behind two children.
Due to the changes that he was making in his Los Angeles neighborhood, there was an outpouring of grief in the community following his death.