A new charge of
vehicular homicide is the latest of many criminal accusations that over the years have been
leveled against seasoned courtroom veteran, Marion "Suge" Knight.
No stranger to criminal courtrooms, Knight, was arrested yesterday after
being accused of intentionally running over two men with his truck -
The factual allegations surrounding the vehicular homicide charges involve
Knight arguing with at least one man in a Compton, California parking
lot; Knight backing up his truck and running over two men (one was the
man he was arguing with); and Knight running over the two men a second
time as he sped away from the scene. Deputies from the Los Angeles County
Sheriff's Office are indicating that the evidence gathered so far
supports a charge of intentional vehicular homicide. Early reports indicate
that Knight and his attorney are maintaining that the incident was an accident.
Of course, if it can be established that Knight ran the men over accidentally
(which would undoubtedly place Knight in the pantheon of all time world's
worst drivers), the intentional conduct element of vehicular homicide
would be lacking, and the incident would then most probably be deemed
a civil matter. Unfortunately for Knight, he is facing an uphill battle
with this argument because of his extensive criminal history. Knight's
many, well-known, prior brushes with the law put his credibility in issue,
and therefore make it difficult for most people, especially law enforcement,
to give him the benefit of the doubt. Knight has a lot at stake over the
outcome of this charge.
Because of his prior criminal convictions, the seriousness of a vehicular
homicide charge, and the California sentencing law applicable to the case,
Knight will face a life sentence if he is found guilty. Of course, even
if Knight is fortunate enough to recast this incident as an accident,
the civil consequences can still be enormous. A wrongful death civil lawsuit
involving these facts could result in a verdict that runs into the millions.
However this case evolves, Knight is in for a very tough fight.