Man testifies against SugeLOS ANGELES - A man who Marion “Suge’’ Knight ran over told authorities he was upset with the former rap music mogul and punched him through the window of the truck before a deadly encounter that left his friend dead.
Cle “Bone’’ Sloan testified Monday about the day he and friend Terry Carter were hit by a pickup truck driven by Knight, the co-founder of Death Row Records.
But Sloan refused to identify Knight as the man behind the wheel when he was struck outside a Compton burger stand on Jan. 29. He said he didn’t remember specifics of the fight and does not want to be a “snitch.’’
“I will not be used to send Suge Knight to prison,’’ Sloan, an adviser on the upcoming film “Straight Outta Compton,’’ said, adding that he was only on the stand because he was subpoenaed.
Knight, 49, was a key player in the gangster rap scene that flourished in the 1990s, and his label once listed Dr. Dre, Tupac Shakur and Snoop Dogg among its artists. Knight lost control of the company after it was forced into bankruptcy. He has prior felony convictions for armed robbery and assault with a gun. He pleaded no contest in 1995 and was sentenced to five years’ probation for assaulting two rap entertainers at a Hollywood recording studio in 1992.
Sloan’s testimony was offered during a preliminary hearing Monday during which a judge will determine whether there’s enough evidence for Knight to stand trial on murder, attempted murder, and hit-and-run charges. Authorities contend Knight intentionally hit Sloan and Carter. But Knight’s attorney Matt Fletcher says his client was ambushed and was trying to escape an attack when he hit the men.
Sloan said he was trying to forget details of the accident, in which he suffered two fractured ankles, a serious cut to his head, two torn ligaments in his knees and a shoulder injury.
Sloan’s memory troubles prompted Los Angeles Superior Court Ronald Coen to comment at one point on his testimony, “I find that this witness is being deceptive.’’
Fletcher pressed Sloan on his feelings toward Knight and whether he was “enraged’’ at him on the day of the incident. Sloan said he was mad, but disputed that he told detectives that he was enraged.
Fletcher also painted Sloan as the aggressor in the incident. He told Sloan that Knight “hadn’t attacked you in any form, fashion or manner. You agree?’’
“Yes,’’ Sloan said. AP