Who Is Suge Knight?
Suge Knight is a $200 thousand net worth American record executive, music producer, and entrepreneur. Suge Knight was born Marion Knight, Jr. in Compton, California, on April 19, 1965. His childhood nickname “Sugar Bear” inspired his later moniker “Suge.” He is the son of Marion Knight Sr. and Maxine Knight. Suge graduated from Lynwood High School in 1983, where he was a football and track star.
The artist played football for two years at El Camino College before transferring to the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, where he stayed for two more years. Knight was a replacement player for the Los Angeles Rams during the 1987 N.F.L. Players Strike. He engaged them in two games.
Suge Knight’s Career Highlights
Following his time in the N.F.L., Knight went on to work as a concert promoter and bodyguard for many celebrities, including Bobby Brown. In 1989, Knight founded his own music publishing company and made a fortune when Vanilla Ice agreed to sign over the royalties from his hit “Ice Ice Ice Baby. ” However, it was not without controversy.
Knight and his bodyguards allegedly confronted Vanilla Ice numerous times to harass him into signing over the song rights, even breaking into his hotel room and allegedly dangling him by his ankles off the balcony. Knight established an artist management company and signed hip hop artists DJ Quik and The D.O.C. This is how he met many members of the gangsta rap group N.W.A.
Suge Knight’s Death Row Records
Suge Knight is best known as the former C.E.O. of Death Row Records, which was instrumental in bringing gangster rap to the mainstream in the 1990s. Suge and Death Row Records were among the first to sign artists such as Dr. Dre, Tupac Shakur, and Snoop Dogg. Dre‘s solo album, “The Chronic,” had reached Triple Platinum status in the United States by the end of 1993. Snoop Dogg, Dr. Dre’s protege, released his debut album in 1994, launching his career. That same year, “Doggystyle” went quadruple platinum in the United States.
Knight was involved in public feuds with 2 Live Crew and Sean Combs (“Puff Daddy“). When Knight insulted Combs on air at the Source Awards in August 1995, his feud escalated. Later that same year, Suge Knight offered to post Tupac Shakur’s $1.4 million bails for the rapper signing with Death Row. He agreed and released the double album “All Eyez on Me” and “Don Killuminati: The 7 Day Theory” in 1996. M.C. Hammer signed with Death Row in 1995 but left the label soon after.
Death Row Records fell apart after Mr. Knight was imprisoned for parole violations. Several of Death Row’s most prominent artists, notably Dr. Dre, soon left the label. Death Row sold over 150 million albums worldwide and earned an estimated $750 million in net revenue during its peak.
Suge Knight’s Financial Issues
Suge Knight owed the I.R.S. $6.5 million in back taxes in 2002, according to the I.R.S. Suge filed for personal bankruptcy in 2006. He claimed to have assets worth between zero and $50,000 at the time. Knight also claimed to have debts totaling more than $100 million, though much of that resulted from a single $107 million judgment awarded to his business partner’s former wife.
Death Row was forced to declare bankruptcy later that year due to these debts. Death Row’s assets were auctioned off for $18 million in 2009. WIDEawake Entertainment Group emerged as the successful bidder. WIDEawake was eventually sold to New Solutions Financial Corp., a Canadian company. In 2012, New Solutions Financial Corp declared bankruptcy. The assets of Death Row are now owned by a company called Entertainment One.
Suge Knight’s Legal Issues
Since his release from Death Row, Suge Knight has had several run-ins with the law in the two decades. Between 1997 and 2001, he spent four years in prison for parole violations. In 2003, he was sentenced to prison again for violating his parole.
The record executive was involved in several physical fights between 2008 and 2009. On February 8, 2012, he was arrested again in Las Vegas on marijuana charges. Knight was shot in 2014 at a Video Music Awards party hosted by Chris Brown at a West Hollywood Sunset Strip nightclub. He was shot six times but could walk to the hospital independently. Knight and Katt Williams were arrested and charged with robbery in connection with the theft of a camera from a paparazzi photographer in October 2014.
The music producer was charged in August 2017 with threatening the life of F. Gary Gray, the director of “Straight Outta Compton.” Gray’s portrayal of Suge Knight in the film was negative. In 2017, Knight suffered from blindness and blood clots, preventing him from attending various court hearings.
Suge Knight In Fatal Hit And Run Incident
Suge Knight was allegedly involved in a fatal hit-and-run accident in Compton on January 29, 2015. The incident could have been related to a fight on a movie set. Witnesses claim to have seen Suge back his truck over the victim before driving away.
The entrepreneur is said to have then fled the scene and abandoned his car in a parking lot. Suge pleaded no contest to voluntary manslaughter on September 20, 2018, and now faces up to 28 years in state prison. Knight is currently incarcerated at the RJ Donovan Correctional Facility in San Diego as of 2020.
Suge Knight Was Involved In Murders of Tupac Shakur and Biggie Smalls
Suge Knight has been the subject of numerous conspiracy theories involving the assassinations of Tupac Shakur and The Notorious B.I.G. On September 7, 1996, Tupac Shakur was shot in a drive-by shooting. Suge Knight had been in Tupac’s car. A white Cadillac pulled up to Knight’s right side at 11:15 p.m., and Shakur was shot four times. The bullet fragmentation struck Knight in the head. Knight could drive one mile away from the location where police stopped them, and paramedics were called.
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Biggie Smalls, Shakur’s East Coast rival, was murdered similarly on March 9, 1997. Former Death Row artists such as Snoop Dog speculated that Knight was involved in both murders, and Biggie’s death was a revenge killing. Snoop Dogg’s new album, “Tha Doggfather,” openly criticizes Knight for the murder of Tupac Shakur. In 2006, Snoop retaliated verbally against Knight for the murder of Biggie Smalls.
Suge Knight’s Married Life
When Suga Knight was in prison in 1999, he married American R&B singer Michel’le. He had previously assisted her in obtaining sobriety by sending her to rehab. Six years later, she filed for divorce, only to discover that their marriage was invalid because he was still technically married to an ex-wife.
Bailei is the couple’s daughter. Suge’s fiancee Toi Lin Kelly was sentenced to three years in prison in 2018 for assisting Knight in communicating with the producers of a Death Row Records tell-all in 2015. During this time, a judge had previously barred Knight from communicating with anyone other than his lawyer in preparation for his murder trial.
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