Man Pleads Guilty to Voluntary Manslaughter in Murder of Pop Smoke
One of the four men charged in the murder of rapper Pop Smoke has pleaded guilty to voluntary manslaughter and home invasion robbery.
The 20-year-old man — whose name has been withheld from the court because he was a 17-year-old minor at the time of Pop Smoke’s Feb. 2020 death — was sentenced to four years and two months in a juvenile facility, the Associated Press reports.
According to the Los Angeles Times, the defendant was not given credit for the time he has already served at a juvenile detention center since his arrest following Pop Smoke’s murder.
Three more men — Corey Walker, Keandre Rodgers, and one male (and the alleged shooter), whose name is being withheld because he was 15 years old at the time of the shooting — still face charges of murder during the commission of a robbery and burglary.
The rapper born Bashar Jackson was taking a shower in a rented Hollywood Hills residence when masked assailants “rushed” into his upstairs bedroom and confronted him, prosecutors claim. He was pistol-whipped and shot three times in the back by a suspect who was just 15 years old following a struggle, according to testimony from LAPD witnesses at a preliminary hearing in May.
Prosecutors said in May 2021 that the five men — four of whom entered the home — arrived at Pop Smoke’s Airbnb rental shortly after 4 a.m. the day of the slaying in search of a stack of cash, a thick gold chain, and a diamond-studded watch the rapper had flashed on social media.
Following the murder and prior to the 911 call, Walker Googled “Rolex oyster perpetual date just”; that watch, owned by Pop Smoke, was later sold by the men for $2,000.
In an Oct. 2021 hearing, Walker’s lawyer Christopher Darden claimed that his client did not enter the residence the night of the incident and that Walker “assaulted” the alleged shooter upon learning of Pop Smoke’s murder. (Walker allegedly insisted that “if it became necessary for the suspects to defend themselves, they should use a flower vase rather than shoot someone,” Darden said at the time.)
The three remaining defendants are due in a Los Angeles courtroom for a pretrial hearing scheduled for May 5.
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