Canadian rapper, Tory Lanez is scheduled to be sentenced in Los Angeles today, Tuesday 8, for shooting his former close friend and fellow rapper, Megan Thee Stallion.
Prosecutors are asking for LA Superior Court Judge David Herriford to jail the 31-year-old singer for at least 13 years while his attorneys argued Monday that instead of jail, he should be given probation and sent to rehab for alcohol addiction and therapy for ‘childhood trauma’.
During the first day of his sentencing hearing, Lanez’ defense team trotted out several character witnesses who spoke of his philanthropic efforts working for and funding various charities and leading a prayer group in jail.
But conspicuously missing from the courtroom was his victim, Megan Thee Stallion, 28, who said in a letter read to the court that she ‘simply can’t be in the same room as Tory.’
Writing that she hasn’t been ‘at peace’ since Lanez shot her in the feet during a drunken argument in July 2020, Megan said:, ‘I have been tortured and terrorized by the defendant. He made a mockery of my torment.
‘He treated my trauma like a joke and I could have died that day. He’s using his childhood trauma to shield himself from culpability.’
After the shooting, she said, she ‘spiraled into a dark and lonely place where I thought my life was worthless.
Insisting that there should be ‘zero tolerance’ for Lanez ‘kind of torture,’ she added, ‘I beg this court to find the defendant finally accountable.’
Lanez – real name Daystar Peterson – is actually facing a maximum of up to 22 years in jail for the three gun felonies a jury convicted him of last December.
But prosecutors have asked for 13 years. His sentence could also include the performer’s deportation to his native Canada when his time behind bars in the U.S. ends.
During Monday’s hearing, Assistant District Attorney Alex Bott asked Judge Herriford that when deciding his sentence he should take into account several ‘aggravating factors.’
‘He’s never shown a ounce of remorse for the shooting,’ said Bott who added that Lanez’ 12 million social media followers, ‘directed their vitriol’ at Megan after he suggested in posts that she had lied about being shot.
Another ‘aggravating factor,’ he said, was Lanez ‘terrorrizig’ Megan when he was awaiting trial by showing up at her Miami concert in defiance of a protective order that barred him from going near her.
Bott even accused Lanez of ‘weaponizing social media’ against himself and his fellow prosecutor, DDA Kathy Ta by posting on Instagram that the two ‘personally hid evidence’ in their case against him.
‘That painted a target on our backs,’ he added.
Meanwhile, Lanez defense team, Jose Baez, Matthew Barthoma and Ed Welbourn, urged the judge to consider ‘mitigating circumstances’ – like the musician’s tough childhood and alcohol abuse – when deciding his sentence.
The lawyers contended in a written filing that ‘Mr. Peterson’s childhood trauma and mental illness, alcohol-use disorder compromised his ability to manage and regulate his emotions and behaviors and that alcohol use disorder played a significant role in the alleged offenses.’