February 11, 2015 / 8:25 PM / 5 years ago

Suge Knight charged with making threat in California camera theft case

LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Rap mogul Marion “Suge” Knight, already in custody in connection with a hit-and-run death, has also been charged with making a terroristic threat during the 2014 theft of a camera from a celebrity photographer, a prosecutor said on Wednesday.

Rap mogul Suge Knight stands in court during his arraignment on murder charges at the Compton Courthouse in Compton, California February 3, 2015. REUTERS/Paul Buck

Knight, 49, and 43-year-old comedian Katt Williams had previously been charged with robbery in connection with the Sept. 5 camera incident outside a studio in Beverly Hills.

Los Angeles County Deputy District Attorney Keri Modder disclosed the new charge against Knight of making a terroristic threat on Wednesday ahead of a court hearing in that case.

Modder declined to provide details on the specific actions leading to the charge. The count was filed against Knight on Feb. 3, and he has not yet had a chance to enter a plea to the charge.

If Knight is convicted of the charge, it could carry a sentence of 25 years to life under California’s three-strikes law, which gives stiffer sentences to those previously convicted of serious felonies, Modder said.

The charge is the latest legal challenge for the co-founder of Death Row Records, an influential label that in the 1990s featured artists such as Dr. Dre, Tupac Shakur and Snoop Dogg.

Knight faces charges of murder and hit-and-run over a Jan. 29 confrontation outside a fast food restaurant in the Los Angeles suburb of Compton where police say Knight ran over two men with his pickup truck, killing one.

A judge has ordered Knight held without bail in that case, and prosecutors said the rap mogul is also a candidate for the three-strike rule in those criminal proceedings.

Knight and Williams previously pleaded not guilty to a count of robbery of a camera in the Beverly Hills case, and he has pleaded not guilty to the murder and hit-and-run charges.

A hearing was expected on Wednesday afternoon to discuss future court dates in the alleged robbery case.

David Kenner, an attorney for Knight declined to immediately comment on the new charge. Knight has previous convictions from 1997 on two counts of assault with a deadly weapon, according to documents filed in court by prosecutors.

Writing by Alex Dobuzinskis; Editing by Cynthia Johnston

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