C-Murder (government name Corey Miller) has been sitting in the infamous Louisiana State Penitentiary at Angola since 2009, convicted of second-degree murder. The former No Limit rapper and brother of Percy “Master P” Miller was accused of killing 16-year-old Steve Thomas at the Platinum Club in New Orleans in 2002 and was locked away after two trials. Though it seems like C-Murder will never see the light of day again and every album he releases will have to be from behind bars, the rapper may have new life as two new eyewitnesses have come forward proclaiming his innocence.
Rachel Conner, the defense lawyer representing C-Murder, filed papers with the 24th District Court calling for his sentence to be overturned on Monday, arguing that he did not receive a fair trial. According to NOLA.com:
She argued that authorities could link Miller to Thomas’ killing with only two eyewitnesses “who had been threatened by law enforcement, had serious potential criminal charges resolved and had to be arrested under material witness warrants in order to ensure their appearance.” Yet had they been contacted, several “credible” witnesses could have testified that Miller was pushed away from the fray and left the club, Conner said.
Among the two eyewitnesses is former San Antonio Spurs player Tim Bush. He was just a high school student at the time and claims to have seen another man (not C-Murder) in a hat come in the club and fire at Thomas. he did not come forward because he did not want to jeopardize his basketball career.
Some of the issues Conner raises are as follows:
- Juror misconduct during deliberations
- Questions about the competency of one juror
- Abuse of discretion by the trial judge, Hans Liljeberg, who now sits on the 5th Circuit Court of Appeal
Conner argues that the 10-2 verdict used to convict C-Murder was unconstitutional. She claims that jurors voted in favor of conviction “under duress.” They were allegedly pressured to end deliberations.
Assistant District Attorney Terry Boudreaux has countered Conner, arguing that “a number of issues” C-Murder is using now have been addressed in previous appeals and cannot be used again.