Crime Library: Criminal Minds and Methods

C-Murder: Rapper Lives His Lyrics

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The day after the verdict was announced, prosecutors in Jefferson and East Baton Rouge parishes said they would wait until Corey's sentencing before deciding whether or not to proceed on the Baton Rouge charges against the rapper. East Baton Rouge Parish prosecutor, Brenda O'Neal, said she would wait for Corey to be sentenced before deciding whether or not to pursue the attempted first degree murder charges, which carry a ten to 50-year prison sentence. When asked about the logic of pressing other charges after Corey had already been sentenced on the second degree murder charge, O'Neal said another conviction could weigh against Corey before a Pardon Board in later years.

Also looming before Corey were the bribery, conspiracy and contraband charges stemming from the cell phone that was smuggled into his cell by the two now-dismissed Jefferson Parish deputies. Penalties ranged from 30 months to up to five years. Freese also announced he would wait for Corey to be sentenced in the Thomas murder before deciding whether or not to proceed on the cell phone-related charges.

Louisiana State Supreme Court
Louisiana State Supreme Court

Earlier, Rakosky had argued before the Louisiana State Supreme Court that the contraband charges against Corey should be dropped, because cellphone were not specifically listed under the statute's definition of contraband. Those charges were eventually dropped, an act that prompted Sheriff Lee to persuade state legislators to add it to the list of items defined as contraband in jail cells.

Had he been sentenced, Corey would likely have been sent to the Louisiana State Prison in Angola. There he would have joined the ranks of Freddy Fender, Charles Neville, and other noteworthy fellow musicians who spent time in the notorious correctional facility along the Mississippi River, about 40 miles above Baton Rouge. However, Judge Sassone did not set a sentencing date right away, and defense attorneys immediately announced they would file motions for a new trial.

In the meantime, Sassone made a surprise decision on October 7 to call the jurors in the Thomas murder case back into court for a closed-door hearing. Having been placed under a gag order by Sassone, neither the prosecution nor the defense could comment on the reason for the unusual step, but it was the first hint that something might be amiss. Without being specific, Sassone's law clerk Denise Chopin told reporters the closed-door session was requested by both prosecutors and defense attorneys to discuss "a preliminary matter that needed to be disposed of" before a motion for a new trial could be held in open court three weeks later.

Each juror was called into Sassone's office, one by one, before they were all sent home. What was discussed wasn't made public until more than three months later. However, it was reported that it had something to do with Sassone's instructions to the jury, following their verdict, not to discuss the case with anyone. Usually after a verdict is announced, jurors are then free to discuss the cases in which they served. During this out-of-the-ordinary procedure, Corey was brought into the nearly empty courtroom in his orange prison jumpsuit where he conferred with Rakosky and Regan before being returned to his cell.

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