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Snoop Doggy Dogg Trial: 1995-96

A Rising Rap Star, Murder Was The Charge, Jury Frees Snoop Dogg, Suggestions For Further Reading

Defendants: Calvin Broadus, McKinley Lee
Crimes Charged: Murder, voluntary manslaughter, conspiracy to commit assault; accessory to murder after the fact (Broadus)
Chief Defense Lawyers: Broadus: David Kenner, Marcia Morrissey; Lee: Donald Re Chief Prosecutors: Edward Nison, Robert Grace
Judge: Paul G. Flynn
Place: Los Angeles, California
Date of Trial: November 27, 1995-February 21, 1996
Verdict: Not guilty of murder, assault, and accessory charges; mistrial on voluntary manslaughter charges

SIGNIFICANCE: The arrest of Calvin Broadus a.k.a. Snoop Doggy Dogg for murder coincided with his ascendancy as the most popular rap music star in the United States. The case also fueled a general debate over whether "gangster rap" contributed to or merely reflected gunplay, drug abuse, sexual violence, street gang warfare, and other social ills.

In the afternoon of August 25, 1993, rising rap star Calvin Broadus, better known as Snoop Doggy Dogg, heard a commotion in the street outside his Los Angeles apartment. As Broadus watched, his bodyguard McKinley "Malik" Lee went outside to investigate. Lee found a carload of street gang members arguing with Sean Abrams, one of Broadus's friends. Lee's appearance ended the argument, but as the car departed, Broadus thought he recognized one of the occupants as a man who had recently accosted him with a pistol at a video filming. The gang member was Philip Woldemariam, a 20-year-old Ethiopian immigrant.

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Law Library - American Law and Legal InformationNotable Trials and Court Cases - 1995 to Present