GRETNA, La. - Rapper C-Murder will spend life in prison after a conviction of second-degree murder in the nightclub shooting of a 16-year-old boy.
Relatives of C-Murder, whose real name is Corey Miller, began sobbing as the verdict was read Tuesday and were escorted out of the courtroom. Miller is the younger brother of rapper Percy Miller Jr., who is known as Master P.
Their father, Percy Miller Sr., said the family would seek an appeal. "My son didn't do that," he said.
Steve Thomas was beaten and fatally shot Jan. 12, 2002, during a fight outside the Platinum Club in Harvey.
"Now Steve can rest in peace," his father, George, said after the verdict.
Assistant District Attorney Douglas W. Freese said he was satisfied with the verdict: "I believe the killer has been put where he belongs."
The conviction has an automatic life sentence.
Defense attorney Ronald J. Rokosky did not speak to the media following the verdict.
Before they began deliberations Tuesday, jurors were told they could find Miller, 30, innocent of second-degree murder but guilty of manslaughter in Thomas' death.
But Assistant District Attorney Roger Jordan urged them to convict on the more serious charge. "Miller's a murderer. He's a killer. He took away something you can't give back - Steve's life," Jordan said.
Two prosecution witnesses testified that Miller beat and shot Thomas. Nine defense witnesses said he had nothing to do with the killing, but gave different descriptions of his clothes and of his whereabouts within the club.
Rokosky argued that investigators botched the case, finding only two witnesses who could identify Miller as the gunman out of 150 people in the club.