Megan Thee Stallion said she has suffered daily since rapper Tory Lanez shot her in the feet three years ago in a written statement read during Lanez’s sentencing, which will stretch into Tuesday.
“Since I was viciously shot by the defendant, I have not experienced a single day of peace,” Megan said in a statement read by Los Angeles County Deputy District Attorney Kathy Ta. “Slowly but surely, I’m healing and coming back, but I will never be the same.”
The hip-hop star, who testified during the trial, said she struggled with whether she would appear to give the statement in person, but said she “simply could not bring myself to be in a room with Tory again.”
She asked that her absence not be taken as a sign of indifference, and urged Judge David Herriford to issue a stiff sentence.
The judge had been expected to sentence Lanez Monday at a hearing that often can take only a couple of hours, but Herriford had attorneys for the two sides argue each factor of his potential sentence, and allowed seven witnesses to give statements on Lanez’s charitable giving, his childhood trauma, and his status as father of a 6-year-old son.
Lanez, a Grammy-nominated rapper whose legal name is Daystar Peterson, was convicted on Dec. 23, 2022 and is facing up to 22 years and 8 months in prison.
The Los Angeles District Attorney’s office, which is prosecuting this case, filed a motion in May asking the judge to give the rapper a 13-year sentence. Prosecutors also filed a motion on May 23, arguing for a harsher sentence for the rapper. According to the motion, a new California law would by default make the rapper’s sentence come in the “middle term” of the potential 22-year sentence, unless “circumstances in aggravation” were proven.
The 2020 shooting
Megan Thee Stallion, whose real name is Megan Jovon Ruth Pete, testified at the Los Angeles County trial that Lanez shouted for her to “dance” and fired the gun towards her feet when she walked away from an SUV they were in with two others on July 12, 2020.
She told the court that she initially told police that she had cut her feet on glass when asked why she was bleeding.
She was taken by ambulance to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, where doctors found bullet fragments in her foot that required surgery to remove.
Weeks after the shooting incident in August 2020, the rapper publicly stated on Instagram that Lanez was the shooter. “Yes Tory shot me,” she said. “It’s not that I was protecting anybody. I just wasn’t ready to speak.”
She also later took aim at him in the song “Shots Fired.”
“I couldn’t walk for a while,” she testified. “I still have nerve damage. I can’t really feel the side of my left foot. The back of my feet are always sore, but I just push through it.”
She also told the court that Lanez offered her $1 million to keep quiet about the shooting. Lanez’s lawyers had argued that a post from his Instagram account was improperly admitted into evidence. They said that Megan’s testimony that Lanez urged her not to go to police because he was on parole and would be in serious trouble was both untrue and an improper allowance of prior bad acts. And they said DNA evidence that prosecutors used to argue Lanez was the likely shooter fell well short of industry standards.
“I could be your son. I could be your brother,” Lanez pleaded with Herriford as he was led from the courtroom the day before the judge ruled that excluding the disputed evidence wouldn’t have made a difference.
His lawyers plan to appeal the conviction.
Lanez began releasing mixtapes in 2009 and saw a steady rise in popularity, moving on to major-label albums. Megan Thee Stallion, now 28, was already a major rising star at the time of the shooting, and her prominence has surged since. She won a Grammy for best new artist in 2021, and has had No. 1 singles with “Savage,” featuring Beyoncé, and as a guest with Cardi B on “WAP.”
The allegations and subsequent charges against Lanez unleashed several waves of misinformation and online vitriol aimed at the artist born Megan Pete, prompting conversations about misogynoir — a specific form of misogyny experienced by Black women.
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