UNITED STATES NEWS

New York governor commutes sentence of rapper G. Dep who had turned self in for cold case killing

Dec 23, 2023, 11:21 AM | Updated: 12:32 pm

NEW YORK (AP) — Rapper Travell “G. Dep” Coleman, who walked into a New York police precinct in 2010 and admitted to committing a nearly two-decade-old cold case murder to clear his conscience, has been granted clemency by Gov. Kathy Hochul.

Now 49, Coleman has served 13 of a 15-year-to-life sentence. With his sentence being commuted by the Democratic governor, he will now be allowed to seek parole earlier than his original 2025 date.

Coleman is one of 16 individuals granted clemency by Hochul in an announcement made Friday. They include 12 pardons and four commutations. It marked the third time Hochul has granted clemency in 2023.

“Through the clemency process, it is my solemn responsibility as governor to recognize the efforts individuals have made to improve their lives and show that redemption is possible,” Hochul said in a written statement.

The rapper earned an associate’s degree while in prison and facilitated violence prevention and sobriety counseling programs, while also participating in a variety of educational and rehabilitative classes, according to Hochul’s office. His clemency application was supported by the prosecutor in the case and the judge who sentenced him.

As G. Dep, Coleman had hits with “Special Delivery” and “Let’s Get It” and helped popularize a loose-limbed dance called the Harlem shake in the early 2000s. The rapper was one of the rising stars of hip-hop impresario Sean “Diddy” Combs’ Bad Boy Records label in the late 1990s and early 2000s. But his career slumped after his 2001 debut album, “Child of the Ghetto,” and the rapper became mired in drug use and low-level arrests, his lawyer said in 2011.

Attorney Anthony L. Ricco said at the time that Coleman “had been haunted” by the 1993 fatal shooting of John Henkel and decided to confess to shooting someone as a teenager during a robbery in East Harlem. Henkel was shot three times in the chest outside an apartment complex.

His brother, Robert Henkel, had demanded Hochul reject the urgings by prosecutor David Drucker to release Coleman, calling it a “farce.” He told the New York Post that “it is one thing to seek (clemency) for drug crimes – but not murder.”

United States News

Associated Press

Bill headed to South Dakota governor would allow museum’s taxidermy animals to find new homes

South Dakota’s Legislature has made it easier for the city of Sioux Falls to find new homes for more than 150 taxidermy animals of its arsenic-contaminated menagerie. The mounted lion, tiger, polar bear and gorilla were part of display that filled a natural history museum at the state’s largest zoo. But when testing in August […]

5 minutes ago

Migrants unload their items off a bus as they arrive at a bus stop after leaving a processing facil...

Associated Press

Border Patrol releases hundreds of migrants at a bus stop after San Diego runs out of aid money

SAN DIEGO (AP) — Hundreds of migrants were dropped off Friday at a San Diego bus stop instead of at a reception center that had been serving as a staging area because it ran out of local funding sooner than expected, showing how even the largest city on the country’s southern border is struggling to […]

6 minutes ago

Associated Press

Seaplane crashes near PortMiami, all 7 passengers escape without injury, officials say

MIAMI (AP) — A seaplane overturned Friday afternoon while trying to land near PortMiami, but no serious injuries were reported, officials said. The aircraft came down in a channel between the port’s cruise ship terminals and a causeway that connects Miami to Miami Beach, according to Miami-Dade Fire Rescue. The single-engine Cessna 208 was trying […]

8 minutes ago

Associated Press

Alabama Senate OKs bill targeting college diversity efforts

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — Alabama lawmakers have advanced legislation aimed at prohibiting universities, schools and public entities from maintaining diversity and inclusion offices or funding initiatives that teach what Republicans labeled as “divisive concepts.” The multi-pronged proposal is one of dozens of bills introduced by Republican lawmakers across the country that would restrict initiatives on […]

23 minutes ago

Associated Press

Wyoming starts selecting presidential delegates Saturday. But there’s not a statewide election

WASHINGTON (AP) — Although the South Carolina primary has been the focal point of the GOP presidential nomination fight for much of the last month, it’s not the only contest on Saturday where Republicans will be voting for a presidential candidate or where all-important delegates will be at stake. More than 1,800 miles away, state […]

34 minutes ago

Associated Press

A search warrant reveals additional details about a nonbinary teen’s death in Oklahoma

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) — A recently released police search warrant has revealed more details in the case of Nex Benedict, a nonbinary Oklahoma student who died a day after a high school bathroom fight that may have been prompted by bullying over gender identity. The warrant filed Wednesday in Tulsa County District Court shows that […]

39 minutes ago

Sponsored Articles

...

Midwestern University

Midwestern University Clinics: transforming health care in the valley

Midwestern University, long a fixture of comprehensive health care education in the West Valley, is also a recognized leader in community health care.

(KTAR News Graphic)...

Boys & Girls Clubs

KTAR launches online holiday auction benefitting Boys & Girls Clubs of the Valley

KTAR is teaming up with The Boys & Girls Clubs of the Valley for a holiday auction benefitting thousands of Valley kids.

...

Canvas Annuity

Interest rates may have peaked. Should you buy a CD, high-yield savings account, or a fixed annuity?

Interest rates are the highest they’ve been in decades, and it looks like the Fed has paused hikes. This may be the best time to lock in rates for long-term, low-risk financial products like fixed annuities.

New York governor commutes sentence of rapper G. Dep who had turned self in for cold case killing