On Dec. 23, musician Daystar Peterson, better known as Tory Lanez, was found guilty the charges relating to the 2020 shooting that involved rapper Megan Thee Stallion, aka Megan Pete. Pete testified that Lanez shot her in the foot following an argument between the two.
Lanez pled not guilty to the three felony counts he was charged with. They were carrying a loaded, unregistered firearm in a vehicle, assault with a semiautomatic handgun and discharging a firearm with gross negligence.
Pete testified on the night of the shooting that an argument broke out in the vehicle because Lanez wanted Pete to tell Kelsey Harris, Pete’s former friend and assistant, about their intimate relationship.
Pete claimed Lanez had yelled “dance b*tch,” before firing five rounds at her feet. She also testified that he offered her and Harris $1 million in hush money. He allegedly wanted them not to speak about the shooting because he was on probation for a weapons offense.
Pete stated, “I didn’t want to see anybody die, I didn’t want to die.” Pete testified that she did not tell police that she was shot because of the tension between Black people and law enforcement during the time of the shooting.
Pete claimed her career was another major factor for why she did not initially say Lanez shot her, “I didn’t want to talk to the officers because I didn’t want to be a snitch, snitching is frowned upon in the hip-hop community.”
This caused some to speculate if Pete was actually shot. However, a surgeon testified to removing bullet fragments from both of her feet. He also provided X-rays showing some of the fragments that still remain in her foot.
A recorded phone call between Lanez and Harris, which was used as evidence in the trial, was released publicly shortly after the trial. The phone call takes place about five hours after the shooting. Lanez does not claim he shot Pete in this recording. However, he does express regret for his drunk actions, “I know she [Megan Thee Stallion] probably never, ever gonna talk to me ever again, but I just want you to know, bruh, I was just so f*cking drunk. I ain’t even know what the f*ck was going on, bruh, like dead*ss. I’d never do some sh*t like that… I was just so f*cking drunk, n*gga, I just didn’t understand what the f*ck was going on, bruh. Regardless, that’s not going to make anything right and that’s not going to make my actions right.”
Lanez chose not to testify for his own defense.
Lanez’s defense team claims that the initial argument was between Harris and Pete regarding Lanez. They seemed to imply that Harris shot Pete out of jealousy. According to George Mgdesyan, a lawyer for Lanez, “the case was about jealousy and a sexual relationship.”
The jurors reached the verdict after about seven hours of deliberation, spread across two days. Lanez showed no reaction to the verdict being read. However, Lanez’s father, Sonstar Peterson, began yelling at the judge and prosecution. Lanez potentially faces up to 22 years in prison and deportation back to Canada.
The trial and its outcome sparked major controversy online. Many people have spoken up about the treatment and criticism Pete has faced since she first claimed that Lanez shot her. Others continue to support Lanez and speculate other possibilities.
Pete spoke about how the shooting has negatively impacted her while on the stand, “I don’t wanna be on this Earth. I wish he woulda’ shot and killed me if I knew I would go through this torture.” She added that by speaking up about what happened made her “lose my confidence, lose my friends, lose myself. Damn, maybe I should be dead.”
Although he was found guilty, Lanez’s exact sentence will not be known until Jan. 27.