JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – A judge has denied a request by defense attorneys representing Hakeem Robinson, a Jacksonville rapper accused of murder, who wanted the state prosecutor removed from the case, according to an order obtained by News4JAX on Friday.
Robinson, known as rapper Ksoo, is in jail and faces two separate second-degree murder charges. He’s charged in the 2019 shooting death of 16-year-old Adrian Gainer and the 2020 shooting death of Charles McCormick.
Robinson is known for his controversial music videos that feature lyrics about the murders. His attorneys said the lyrics do not prove he is guilty.
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According to the original motion filed by Robinson’s attorneys, they believe the state attorney’s office enlists people who are facing jail time to testify against suspects in exchange for a lesser sentence. The motion references a conversation between a state prosecutor and a witness who agreed to testify against murder suspect Deontrae Thomas during his 2020 trial.
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Robinson’s attorneys say the witness was not in jail, but was facing a sentence for a different crime. They said the witness recorded the conversation with the prosecutor on his cellphone. The motion claims the prosecutor told the witness what to say on the stand.
According to the judge’s order, the surreptitious, incomplete (and illegal) recording did not establish “substantial misconduct.” It adds, the witness did not appear to be threatened or pressured by the prosecutor, but rather it appeared the witness was setting up the prosecutor for the witness’s own advantage. The judge said if anyone was guilty of misconduct, it was the witness who illegally recorded the prosecutor without their consent.
Robinson appeared in court on Friday. His attorney’s filed a motion requesting an adversary preliminary hearing. According to the motion, the defense feels there was wrongdoing with how police held Robinson in jail. Attorneys said he was arrested on his second second-degree murder charge hours after the court granted a bond on his first second-degree murder charge and prevented him from being released and increased his bond. The judge said she would take the motion under advisement.
Robinson’s attorneys have also filed a motion to reduce his bond, which is $4 million. The judge scheduled a meeting on March 14 to set a date for that hearing.