Perhaps more than anything else throughout his life, Suge Knight has been known for being at the center of several controversies in hip hop music. The East Coast/West Coast beef, threatening (and in some accounts beating) Ruthless Records’ heads Jerry Heller and Eazy E with baseball bats and lead pipes, being blamed for the death of Tupac, dangling Vanilla Ice by his ankles over a balcony; these are just a few of the incidents that have been attached to West Coast rap’s biggest and most notorious label executive.
So, it probably shouldn’t be a surprise to learn that Suge Knight has been officially indicted for felony criminal threats against F. Gary Gray, the director behind Straight Outta Compton. An L.A. County Grand Jury indictment stated that on August 8, 2014, Knight “threatened to commit a crime which would result in death and great bodily injury to Felix Gary Gray.”
According to the indictment, Knight threatened Gray through text messages during the filming of the N.W.A. biopic. Knight has pled not guilty to the count of felony criminal threats, though it doesn’t matter as Knight is already in jail over the hit-and-run death of Terry Carter, who was also involved in the production of the film. There was an altercation on the set of a promotional shoot for the film, whe]n Knight allegedly ran over two men, Terry Carter and Cle Sloane, though Sloane only sustained non-life-threating injuries. The trial for that case will begin in January 2018, and if convicted, Knight could face life in prison.
Last year, Knight claimed that his human rights were violated in jail and also alleged that Dr. Dre (whom he filed a $300 million lawsuit against along with Apple and Universal Music) ordered a hitman to kill him. Puff Daddy must be feeling pretty good today.
[UPDATE 8/4]: Suge Knight has pleaded not guilty to the charges. He will appear back in court on August 10th. Stay tuned.