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Judge Rejects Prosecutors Attempts to Add Witness Tampering Charges Against Tory Lanez
On Monday, prosecutors attempted to add two charges of witness tampering against Tory Lanez during the artist's felony assault trial.
The judge has denied prosecutors from adding two new witness tampering charges against Tory Lanez, during his felony assault trial. On Monday (December 19), Los Angeles Deputy District Attorney Kathy Ta entered her motion for the new charges, citing California Penal Code 136.1, which makes it a crime to dissuade a witness.
“It’s based on testimony by both the victim and Ms. (Kelsey) Harris,” about “statements the defendant made in the car, offering them a million dollars” Ta told the court, alleging that Megan Thee Stallion and Harris were offered hush money.
Judge David Herriford denied the motion, asking why prosecutors waited so long since Megan made an underlying allegation early in the case. Ta said that she was unsure of how Harris would testify. Last week, Harris testified; however, during her time on the stand, she contradicted herself and didn't recall statements she made in the past. After the testimony, prosecutors got permission to play an older recording of Harris where she said that Tory was the one who shot Meg.
Lanez’s defense lawyer George Mgdsyan objected to the new charges, claiming that prosecutors have known since September what Harris' testimony would likely be, to which the court agreed. Herriford added that the defense would be placed in a "difficult position" to plan a response.
"I think it’s unfair at this juncture, so I would deny that motion,” Judge Herriford said.
Also on Monday, prosecutors were unable to locate an important witness, asking the court for an extra day to present their case or re-open their presentation after defense rests. Although the 'missing' witness was not named, an anonymous source told Rolling Stone that it was Megan's former bodyguard, Justin Edison.
Lanez, real name Daystar Peterson, pleaded not guilty to three felony charges in the case, including assault with a firearm causing great bodily injury; concealing a loaded, unregistered firearm in a vehicle. The case also has a recently added count of discharging a firearm with gross negligence. If convicted, Lanez faces 22 years and eight months in prison and subsequent deportation to Canada.