A witness in the murder trial of Nipsey Hussle’s alleged killer, Eric Holder, revealed the late rap star’s last words before his death while testifying on Monday (June 20). Shermi Villanueva, 47, who was also injured during the 2019 shooting that took Hussle’s life, says the entrepreneur and philanthropist acknowledged that Holder had shot him before collapsing to the ground.
“’He shot me. He shot me,’” Villanueva said of Hussle’s final declaration prior to his passing. “I heard it, and then I saw Nipsey fall. When I looked and see Nipsey, I started to run.” The witness also gave testimony that he didn’t hear Holder say anything prior to firing on Hussle, which goes against Holder’s defense of acting in the “heat of the moment” and aligns with the prosecution’s theory that the shooting was planned out in advance and premeditated.
Villanueva continued to describe the scene, adding, “[My Uncle] was like, ‘I’m shot also.’ We were paying attention to Nipsey, and he was like, ‘I’m shot also.’ I told him, ‘Don’t move,’ because he said he was shot in his back, and it was possible he could have a spinal injury.”
During the opening statements of the trial, prosecutors alleged that Holder’s shooting of Hussle was premeditated. Holder’s getaway driver, Bryannita Nicholson also testified and detailed the events that happened before and after the shooting. She added that Holder demanded she drive their getaway car. “Drive before I slap you,” she alleged.
Nipsey Hussle was gunned down in 2019 in the parking lot of his The Marathon Clothing Store following a verbal exchange with Holder, who is accused of returning to the scene and murdering the rapper due to feeling disrespected during their prior exchange. Holder faces one count of murder, two counts of attempted murder, and one count of possession of a firearm by a felon. If convicted, Holder faces life in prison.