C-Murder Is A Victim Of Mistaken Identity, Lawyer Says

By | January 29, 2002 at 12:00 AM

C-Murder, who was arrested last week on suspicion of committing second-degree murder, will plead not guilty, according to his lawyer, who said his client is a victim of mistaken identity.

The rapper, whose real name is Corey Miller, was arrested January 18 in Jefferson Parish, Louisiana, where he is accused of killing 16-year-old Steve Thomas with a single gunshot to the chest during an argument on January 12 at the Platinum Club in Harvey. About 200 people were in the club, and several were eyewitnesses.

C-Murder’s attorney, Roy Maughan Jr., said police arrested the wrong man. “He thinks it’s very unfortunate that this young man was killed,” Maughan said. “But he’s absolutely not guilty.”

If convicted of second-degree murder, he faces life imprisonment without the possibility of parole, probation or suspension of sentence.

C-Murder might have to wait awhile to make his plea in court. The Jefferson Parish district attorney’s office is still reviewing the case and has yet to assign a case number, meaning no charges have been formally accepted, said Conn Reagan, the office’s chief of trial. That might not happen for 30 to 45 days, Reagan said, depending on the number of witnesses and the amount of police evidence provided to help determine whether it’s a prosecutable case. Aside from general procedure, Reagan could not discuss the case, as it is policy not to comment on an open case.

As for C-Murder’s other pending charges – including a disturbing the peace and criminal trespass arrest on January 18 in New Orleans at the House of Blues – Maughan said he’s confident those will be easy enough to resolve and that he’s concentrating on the murder charge first. He’s currently advising his client, who is being held on $1 million bail at the Jefferson Correctional Facility in Gretna, Louisiana, not to post bail.

“It wouldn’t be advantageous for him to post millions of dollars to be released,” Maughan said, noting that C-Murder’s latest arrest violates the terms of release from a previous arrest for attempted murder in Baton Rouge. “He would just be transported back [to Baton Rouge].”

Maughan, who is based in Baton Rouge, said he hopes to help his client find an attorney more familiar with the venue and jury pool in Jefferson Parish. “It’s very important in a case of this nature,” Maughan said.

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