Rapper Kidd Creole, a founding member of the legendary hip-hop group Grandmaster Flash and the Furious 5, is facing up to 16 years in prison following the stabbing death of a homeless man during a dispute in Manhattan.
Likewise, the 62-year-old hip-hop pioneer, known as Nathaniel Glover, pleaded guilty to manslaughter in April 2017 for killing 55-year-old alleged offender John Jolly.
“A life is a life, whether the person is homeless, whether the person is a CEO,” said Manhattan Supreme Court Justice Michele Rodney at the sentencing hearing. “Within seconds … Mr. Jolly’s life was changed forever.”
Moreover, she stated that the defense’s argument that Glover acted in self-defense since Jolly was a sexual offender did not hold water.
“You didn’t know him,” she told Glover. “You didn’t know that he had a [history of] violence or was a sexual offender. Those things were not known and don’t have much relevance in terms of anybody’s action in this case.”
The Rock and Roll Hall of Famer, whose band produced hit singles like “Freedom” and “The Message” in the early 1980s, faced up to 25 years in prison. Furthermore, Glover, wearing a gray suit with his hair tied into a ponytail, looked stern as Rodney read the sentence. However, he stated that the charges against him were not true.
“I’m very disappointed in the way that this whole situation played out. I’ve been portrayed as a callous and senseless [killer]… which is far from the person who I am,” he said in court. “I’ve been slandered and all this made me seem as if I am a person who actually has no remorse and no repentance.”
The victim’s cousin believes Kidd Creole deserved a longer sentence
In addition, Glover expressed disappointment with the way the proceedings were conducted, adding, “I also feel that at a certain point the truth of all of this will be revealed and I will be exonerated.”
After thanking the prosecutor, he left the courtroom. Nevertheless, Cheryl Horry, a cousin of Jolly, argued that Kidd Creole deserved a harsher penalty due to his lack of remorse.
“I don’t agree with the sentence at all. He should have gotten the max. Should’ve got 25 years because he seems like a heartless punk right now. He didn’t say sorry to no one,” Horry said outside the courtroom.
“All he was worried about was his image, that’s all he talked about the whole time — his image, how it made him look,” she said. “I am very upset. I’m very angry.”
Creole’s arrest: What led to it?
In August 2017, Glover and Jolly engaged in a shouting match on the corner of East 44th Street and Third Avenue. According to the police after his arrest, the altercation occurred before the stabbing. Moreover, in later testimony, the prosecution said Glover stabbed Jolly because he believed the homeless man was hitting on him. However, as of Wednesday, Assistant District Attorney Mark Dahl requested that Glover be sentenced to 18 years in prison.
“The defendant had committed a senseless and unwarranted act of violence that took the life of one of the city’s most vulnerable populations — the homeless,” Dahl said.
According to Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg, this case represents his office’s strong stance against violent crime.
“Mr. Jolly’s death was devastating to his family and those who knew him,” Bragg said after the sentencing. “This case makes clear that if you commit a violent crime, we will hold you accountable.”
Lawyer dissatisfied with how the judge handled the case
Furthermore, Scottie Celestin, Glover’s lawyer, criticized the judge’s handling of the case after the sentencing. Also, Celestin stated that he planned to appeal.
“I’m fully confident this case is going to come back on appeal,” he said outside court.
“I think how the judge handled this case….I think she steered the case and it’s going to come back,” he added without elaborating.
Ultimately, as part of the trial, Scottie Celestin stated that Glover acted in self-defense and that Jolly’s injuries were not life-threatening. Formerly, Celestin attributed the death of Jolly to a combination of alcohol and sedatives. After all, he received it from the staff at Bellevue Hospital because he was proving to be combative.
Written by Nikiya Biggs
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