Knight case vic­tim’s fam­ily files law­suit

Los Angeles Times - - THE STATE - By Matt Hamil­ton matthew.hamil­ton@la­times.com

The wife of the man who died af­ter Mar­ion “Suge” Knight al­legedly plowed over him in a pickup truck dur­ing film­ing of a com­mer­cial for “Straight Outta Comp­ton” has filed a wrong­ful-death law­suit against the for­mer rap im­pre­sario and key fig­ures in­volved in the film, in­clud­ing Dr. Dre and Ice Cube.

Lillian Carter al­leged in a law­suit filed last week in Los An­ge­les County Su­pe­rior Court that the Jan. 29 death of her hus­band, Terry Carter, was a pre­ventable tragedy re­sult­ing from neg­li­gence on the part of Dre, Ice Cube and Uni­ver­sal Stu­dios — the dis­trib­u­tor of “Straight Outta Comp­ton.”

The suit al­leged that Uni­ver­sal and oth­ers in­volved in the film knew of long-stand­ing ten­sion be­tween Knight and Dre, who to­gether co­founded Death Row Records, but al­lowed the film to move for­ward even af­ter Knight ob­jected to his por­trayal in the film.

Uni­ver­sal also is ac­cused of neg­li­gently hir­ing Cle “Bone” Sloan — an ad­vi­sor to the film who helped smooth over re­la­tions with gang mem­bers in Comp­ton, al­low­ing the film to be shot there. Uni­ver­sal, Dre and Ice Cube knew that Sloan had been feud­ing with Knight, the suit al­leged.

A quar­rel be­tween Knight and Sloan pre­cip­i­tated Carter’s death in the Tam’s Burger park­ing lot, the com­plaint says. Sloan, 51, also was struck and in­jured by the pickup truck.

The law­suit blames Uni­ver­sal, Dre, Ice Cube and oth­ers for al­low­ing pro­duc­tion to con­tinue in Comp­ton in ar­eas prone to crime.

“Reck­less cor­po­rate greed, dis­guised as the quest for au­then­tic­ity, led to a fore­see­able al­ter­ca­tion that re- sulted in the death of a suc­cess­ful busi­ness­man named Terry Carter,” ac­cord­ing to the com­plaint, which seeks un­spec­i­fied dam­ages.

Carl E. Dou­glas, one of the at­tor­neys rep­re­sent­ing Lillian Carter and her two adult daugh­ters, said: “They were all aware of Suge’s vi­o­lent past and his propen­sity for vi­o­lence. We al­lege it was fore­see­able that some con­fronta­tion would oc­cur.”

The suit also names the owner of the pickup truck driven by Knight, who al­legedly lacked a driver’s li­cense at the time of Carter’s death, and faults the owner with neg­li­gently en­trust­ing her car to Knight.

Uni­ver­sal Stu­dios and a rep­re­sen­ta­tive for Ice Cube could not be reached for com­ment. Howard E. King, a long­time at­tor­ney rep­re­sent­ing Dre, could not be reached for com­ment.

In re­sponse to the suit, Knight’s at­tor­ney, Thomas Me­sereau, told the Los An­ge­les Times: “Mr. Knight de­nies any li­a­bil­ity what­so­ever. He was de­fend­ing him­self at all times.”

Knight is be­ing held in an L.A. County jail and has pleaded not guilty to a mur­der charge in Carter’s death.

Duane Moody

THE FAM­ILY of Terry Carter says his death was a pre­ventable tragedy.

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