News: T.I. Associate Philant Johnson's Murder Trial Begins, Witness Points Finger At Brother

Wednesday, Nov 19, 2008 5:28PM

Written by Cyrus Langhorne

T.I. & Philant Johnson

Opening statements by prosecutors in a case involving the murder of T.I.'s assistant and close friend, Philant Johnson, began today (November 19) in Cincinnati, Ohio.

According to the Cincinnati Enquirer, jury members were told primary suspect Hosea Thomas is solely responsible for the death of Johnson resulting from a shoot-out with Tip's entourage in May 2006.

"It's all going to come down to witness testimony," prosecutor Heather Gosselin told jurors today.

In a surprising turn of events, Hosea's brother, Padron, who was also involved in the shoot-out, has stepped forward to testify against him. Despite the allegation, Hosea's attorney Charles Isaly feels confident the statements won't hold up in court.

"Credibility. That's what this case comes down to," Isaly told Enquirer. "[Prosecutors] just don't have evidence."

By testifying against his brother, Padron will reportedly no longer face murder charges which, in turn, will permit him to offer a guilty plea to manslaughter and have all additional charges fall in line with his federal prison sentence. This will also ensure he faces no prison time for his role in the murder of Johnson.

As previously reported by SOHH, Tip is expected to testify on Friday (November 21) about the events that took place when the shoot-out occurred.

[For more on your favorite rappers from the ATL peep SOHH Atlanta]


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