The two men alleged to be responsible for the 2002 murder of Run-DMC member Jam Master Jay, who was gunned down inside his recording studio in Jamaica Queens, N.Y., will head to trial later this year.
In October 2020, Ronald Washington and Karl Jordan, Jr. were charged in a 10-count indictment for their alleged roles in Jam Master Jay’s death. Washington was serving a prison sentence for an armed robbery at the time of the indictment, while Jordan had been arrested months prior in August.
According to reports, the jury selection for the trial will take place on Sept. 22 and opening statements and testimony will begin on Sept. 26, barring any delays. If scheduling conflicts caused by the COVID-19 pandemic result in the trial being delayed, the date will be pushed back to February 2023. The trial is estimated to last approximately two weeks.
“The defendants allegedly carried out the cold-blooded murder of Jason Mizell, a brazen act that has finally caught up with them thanks to the dedicated detectives, agents and prosecutors who never gave up on this case,” stated Acting United States Attorney DuCharme at the time. “The charges announced today begin to provide a measure of justice to the family and friends of the victim, and make clear that the rule of law will be upheld, whether that takes days, months or decades.”
NYPD Commissioner Dermot F. Shea spoke on the authorities’ relentless pursuit of the men behind Jam Master Jay’s death, deeming it an example of the NYPD force’s dedication to solving the case.
“The gunshots that rang out in a recording studio in Queens nearly 18 years ago, taking this pioneering rap artist’s life, have been answered. Today’s indictment shows that no amount of time passed can erase the commitment of our NYPD detectives, federal law enforcement partners and prosecutors in the US Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District, to the pursuit of justice,” stated NYPD Commissioner Shea.
According to court documents, Jam Master Jay was killed after purchasing 10 kilograms of cocaine, worth $1.7 million. When Jam Master Jay voiced his intentions to cut Washington out of the deal, Washington conspired with Jordan to rob and murder him, confronting JMJ and another man in his 24/7 recording studio. The men allegedly ordered the other man to lay on the ground, while Jordan approached Jam Master Jay and shot him twice at close range, including once in the head.
If convicted, Washington and Jordan are facing a minimum sentence of 20 years in prison and a maximum term of life imprisonment.