Tory Lanez is due back in court on May 8 for a sentencing hearing that could send him to jail for more than 22 years for shooting fellow rapper Megan Thee Stallion.
As his court date neared, the Canadian hip-hop star posted an open letter on Instagram to Los Angeles County District Attorney George Gascón on Friday proclaiming his innocence, calling for a new trial and criticizing prosecutors.
“I write this letter with the utmost humility, love and respect for the remarkable stance you have taken in the fight for justice for black and brown minorities,” Lanez began.
The rapper, whose real name is Daystar Peterson, then criticized the prosecutors who tried the case against him.
“Today I take a stand as an innocent black man, wrongfully convicted of a crime I did not commit,” he continued. “I witnessed two district attorneys in your office by the name of Kathy Ta and Alex Bott unlawfully abusing their authority to conceal and suppress all exculpatory evidence that exonerates me or reinforces my innocence. I have been completely robbed and deprived of a fair trial.
Related story: Tory Lanez sentencing delayed again as rapper’s lawyers push for new trial
The “It Doesn’t Matter” singer went on to say that his legal team plans to argue for a new trial at the next hearing.
“Not only do I owe it to myself to fight for my freedom, but I owe it to my 6-year-old, my family, my fans, and most importantly, the hundreds of thousands of black and Hispanic minorities who can’t adequately fight for themselves,” he wrote.
During the trial, Houston rapper Megan Thee Stallion testified that Lanez said “dance b–ch” to her and began shooting her after she left a pool party at Kylie Jenner’s house in the early morning hours of 12 July 2020, and had had an argument.
“I’m in shock. I’m scared. I hear the shot and I can’t believe he’s shooting at me,” she told the court.
The rapper, whose real name is Megan Pete, added that Lanez begged her not to say anything because he was already on probation and offered her $1 million to shut up.
Lanez maintained his innocence throughout the case.
Related story: Tory Lanez profusely apologizes after Megan Thee Stallion shooting, prosecutor says
On December 23, 2022, he was convicted of assault with a semi-automatic firearm; grossly negligently discharging a firearm; and transporting a loaded unregistered firearm in a vehicle; as well as the special allegation of use of a firearm to inflict grievous bodily harm.
He has remained incarcerated ever since.
Following his sentencing, Lanez was scheduled to be sentenced on January 27. The date was then moved to February 28, before being postponed to April 10, then to April 17 and later to May 8.
The delays came after he replaced his original lawyer, George Mgdesyan, with renowned defense attorney Jose Baez in January. Baez secured Casey Anthony’s acquittal during his 2011 trial for the murder of his young daughter, Caylee Anthony.
Lanez’s new legal team filed a motion last month claiming “the court erred on numerous points of law.” Among their complaints, jurors were “wrongly allowed” to see a September 2020 Instagram comment attributed to Lanez about the shooting.
Lawyers urge the judge to throw out the guilty verdict, which prosecutors oppose.
At the April 17 hearing, Lanez’s attorneys told the judge they planned to file a supplement to their motion for a new trial, which is another reason the sentencing was delayed.
The judge handling the case recently lifted a gag order — which allowed Lanez to post his open letter on Instagram.
The rapper faces up to 22 years and eight months in state prison and deportation.
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