Rapper Tory Lanez, who was convicted of shooting hip-hop star Megan Thee Stallion, was denied a motion for a new trial by a Los Angeles judge on Tuesday, the Associated Press reports.
Lanez, whose legal name is Daystar Peterson, was convicted of three felonies in December for assaulting Megan with a semiautomatic firearm, having a loaded, unregistered firearm in a vehicle, and discharging a firearm with gross negligence. He could face up to 22 years in prison and deportation to his native Canada.
Lanez’s lawyers argued that evidence was wrongly admitted during the trial, including an Instagram post and Megan’s testimony about prior bad acts. However, Superior Court Judge David Herriford rejected these arguments, stating that their exclusion would not have changed the outcome of the trial. Lanez’s lawyers plan to appeal to a higher court.
During the motion hearing, Lanez pleaded with the judge, stating, “I could be your son. I could be your brother.” His lawyers had an elaborate presentation prepared, complete with audio-visuals and witnesses, but the judge refused to allow it. The trial was full of media and Lanez’s fans and family members, with many more outside in the hallway.
The trial set off a storm of cultural issues and arguments, including the protection of Black women, gender politics in hip-hop, and online toxicity. Megan Thee Stallion, who testified that Lanez fired a handgun at her feet, has seen her prominence surge since the incident, winning a Grammy for best new artist and having multiple Billboard Hot 100 hits. No sentencing date has been set for Lanez.
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