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Childhood Friend, Godson Found Guilty in Hip-Hop Legend Jam Master Jay's Death

Jam Master Jay
Two men were found guilty Tuesday of murdering hip-hop legend Jam Master Jay, ending a nearly two-decade-long pursuit for justice. The verdict brings closure to one of the most baffling cases in music history.

Ronald Washington, Jay’s childhood friend, and Karl Jordan Jr., Jay’s godson, were convicted of murder in the course of narcotics trafficking and firearm-related murder. The courtroom erupted in chaos as the verdict was announced. Washington, visibly agitated, proclaimed, “Y’all just killed some innocent people. Get me outta here!” before being escorted out. Jordan expressed love and gratitude to his supporters.

The federal jury reached its unanimous decision after days of tense deliberations. A juror was replaced last week, leading to renewed deliberations on Monday.

Jam Master Jay, born Jason Mizell, was fatally shot at a recording studio in Jamaica, Queens, on October 30, 2002. The murder sent shockwaves through the music community, and the case remained unsolved for years.

In August 2020, the US attorney for the Eastern District of New York unveiled a criminal indictment implicating Washington and Jordan. They were accused of killing Jam Master Jay in retaliation for a drug-related dispute.

The trial unveiled gripping testimonies, notably from witness Uriel Rincon, who was present at the recording studio on the fateful night. Rincon implicated Washington and Jordan as armed intruders, alleging that Jordan delivered the fatal shot to Jay's head.

Assistant US Attorney Artie McConnell underscored the trial's essence, stating, “It’s about greed. It’s about money. It’s about jealousy,” emphasizing the culpability of Washington and Jordan in the chilling crime.

In a dramatic twist, defense attorneys contended that Jay Bryant, another defendant, was the actual perpetrator. They argued that Bryant's DNA found at the crime scene and his presence on surveillance footage pointed to his involvement.

“This is an attempt to make a mockery of the judicial system. They know who killed Jam Master Jay. They know it was Jay Bryant,” said Susan Kellman, Washington’s attorney.

With the impending trial of Bryant, who has pleaded not guilty, the case promises to continue unfolding, shedding light on the shadows of one of hip-hop's darkest chapters.

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