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Rapper Nipsey Hussle’s killer sentenced to 60 years to life in prison

Eric Holder Jr. was convicted of first-degree murder in the 2019 shooting of Hussle.
/ Source: NBC News

The man convicted of gunning down beloved Los Angeles rapper Nipsey Hussle more than three years ago was sentenced to 60 years to life in prison in a Los Angeles courtroom Wednesday.

Eric Holder was convicted of first-degree murder in July for the March 31, 2019, killing of Hussle in a parking lot outside the rapper’s South Los Angeles apparel shop. He was 33.

A Music Collaboration Unveiling Event
Nipsey Hussle at an event in Atlanta on Dec. 10, 2018.Prince Williams / WireImage

Superior Court Judge H. Clay Jacke handed down the sentence Wednesday after hearing from one of Hussle’s friends and listening to a letter from Holder’s father. Holder, dressed in orange jail attire, stared straight ahead throughout the proceedings and did not react when the sentence was read.

His sentencing hearing had been postponed several times, including most recently Nov. 3. The sentencing has been delayed in part so defense attorney Aaron Jansen could argue to reduce Holder’s conviction to manslaughter or second-degree murder, which the judge rejected in December.

Holder was also found guilty of two counts of attempted voluntary manslaughter after two other people were injured in the shooting.

Hussle, who was born Ermias Asghedom, had grown up with Holder, and both were members of the same gang, the Rollin’ 60s. Prosecutors argued that Holder was upset over accusations that he was a snitch and that it was premeditated when he approached Hussle outside his shop, The Marathon, and opened fire.

Hussle was struck at least 10 times. Afterward, Holder kicked him in the head and fled, Deputy District Attorney John McKinney told jurors. Images shared at trial showed him running from the scene with a semi-automatic pistol.

Holder’s lawyer, Jansen, had described the shooting as a fit of “heated passion.” After his conversation with Hussle, Holder hadn’t had time to cool off when he returned to the shop with a gun, he argued. Jansen described the charges as excessive.

Hussle, whose debut studio album earned him a Grammy nomination months before his death, was also a father of two, a celebrated community leader and advocate who spoke out against gun violence. 

Last year, on what would have been his 37th birthday, Hussle was awarded a star on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.

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