'Suge' Knight pleads not guilty to murder, is taken to hospital

Not guilty: Suge Knight's plea in case involving two men hit by truck

Marion "Suge" Knight pleaded not guilty to murder and attempted murder Tuesday in a Compton courthouse.

Moments after, he was taken to a local hospital for an undisclosed medical reason, Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department spokeswoman Nicole Nishida confirmed.

She would not state his condition, citing state privacy laws.

The former rap mogul, 49, faces a potential third strike in a case that stems from a violent encounter in the parking lot of Tam's Burgers in Compton last week. Los Angeles County sheriff’s deputies say Knight ran over Terry Carter, 55, and Cle "Bone" Sloan, 51, after a fight.

Knight, wearing an orange jumpsuit, also pleaded not guilty to two counts of hit and run and allegations that he committed a violent felony while out on bail pending another case. He's being held without bail and if convicted could be sentenced to life in prison.

He is scheduled to appear in court again Monday for a bail review hearing. Knight is being represented by a new attorney, David Kenner.

Detectives say Knight and Sloan fought while Knight sat in his truck. Knight then allegedly reversed his truck, aimed for Sloan and Carter -- who was not involved in the fight -- and accelerated. Carter was killed and Sloan was hospitalized.

Knight turned himself in the next morning.

Sloan's attorney Michael Shapiro told the L.A. Times on Tuesday morning that Sloan suffered a mangled foot and a concussion in the incident.

"He's really not doing well at all," Shapiro said. "I don't see how the guy lived."

Sloan, no longer hospitalized, is recovering in an undisclosed location.

Knight's former attorney, James E. Blatt, had told reporters that his client was assaulted and while trying to get away from his attackers accidentally ran over the two men. Knight was "heartbroken" over the death of Carter, a longtime friend, Blatt said.

When asked his opinion of Knight's version of events, Shapiro replied: "A man against a car. How do you vote?"

The initial judge in the case, John Cheroske, has recused himself because he previously represented each of the victims. The new judge is Ricardo Ocampo.

Knight's two previous strikes are connected to convictions for assault with a deadly weapon.

For breaking California news, follow @JosephSerna.

Copyright © 2016, Los Angeles Times

UPDATES

9:56 a.m.: This post has been updated to note that Marion "Suge" Knight was taken to a hospital after his arraignment.

8:56 a.m.: This post has been updated with Knight's plea.

8:43 a.m.: This post has been updated with information from an interview with Cle Sloan's attorney.

This post was originally published at 7:35 a.m.

 

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