After several delays, the Taxstone murder trial is finally underway this week in New York, and Troy Ave is expected to testify, per reports.
The trial will likely focus on the rivalry between the two rappers, which escalated at a T.I. concert in New York City back in 2016.
Trial Likely To Focus On Beef Between The Two Rappers & A Deadly Shootout At A T.I. Concert In 2016
Taxstone (real name Daryl Campbell) and Troy Ave (real name Roland Collins) reportedly shot at each other inside the venue, leading the death of Brooklyn rapper’s bodyguard Ronald “Banga” McPhatter.
Taxstone’s DNA was eventually found on a semiautomatic handgun used in the fatal shooting, prompting his arrest a year later in January 2017.
According to Vlad TV, the trial was delayed multiple times before finally beginning on Wednesday (Feb.15)
The former rapper and podcast host faces life in prison if convicted, the outlet reports.
Taxstone murder trial begins in New York, Troy Ave expected to testify
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— HipHopDX (@HipHopDX) February 15, 2023
Prosecutors Reveal They Have Two Cooperating Witnesses, With Troy Ave Being One Of Them
Meanwhile, Taxstone has already pleaded guilty to federal gun charges, however the sentencing for that case won’t occur until after the murder trial concludes.
Prosecutors on behalf of the state revealed they have two cooperating witnesses, with Troy Ave being one of them, according to reports. The other cooperating witness is a convicted drug dealer from Poughkeepsie named Malcom Kinyon.
Kinyon, who is facing 42 years in prison after he reportedly used his record label Outta They League as a front to sell large quantities of cocaine, was not a witness to the shooting in question, but did allegedly tell prosecutors that Taxstone had discussed the murder with him after the fatal shootout.
He was also charged with smuggling firearms into New York City and selling them to the artists on his record label.
Despite initially being charged with the murder, Troy later signed a cooperation agreement with the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office in 2017, with Taxstone being indicted shortly thereafter.
Troy Ave Discusses The Case In Podcast Interview Last Month, Claiming He Fired A Gun In Self-Defense
Last month, Troy Ave discussed the case in an interview with Math Hoffa on his My Expert Opinion podcast, and claimed he fired a gun in self-defense, all of which was captured on CCTV footage.
Ave added that “I really picked up my man body, n****. Like, I picked him up. All these n**** that was there…Maino was there, any n**** there, they didn’t help me pick up Banga’s body, they walked past.”
Sentencing will be decided after the conclusion of the murder trial, according to HipHopDX.
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