/  06.22.2022

Last week (June 15), opening statements for Nipsey Hussle’s murder trial began. On Monday (June 20), a courtroom heard testimony from a woman who says she unknowingly drove the getaway car for the man accused of fatally shooting the “Hussle & Motivate” artist.

Thirty-five-year-old Bryannita Nicholson told a jury that she and Eric Holder were casually seeing each other for about five weeks at the time of the incident. The witness said on March 31, 2019, she and Holder entered the South Los Angeles shopping strip where Hussle’s The Marathon Clothing Store is located. According to testimony, the pair initially went to get food from the nearby Master Burger. Nicholson admitted that as a fan, she was excited to see the “Grinding All My Life” hitmaker standing outside.

Nicholson, a key prosecution witness reportedly receiving immunity in exchange for her story, told the room, “I said, ‘Ooh, there goes Nipsey, he fine. I want to take a picture with him.’” The 35-year-old said she did not know that Holder and Hussle grew up together and had ties to the same gang. Nicholson added she didn’t know Hussle owned the clothing store near the restaurant Holder asked her to go to. As she continued, she shared that Holder exited the vehicle while she looked for parking.

“I just thought he was trying to beat me to go see him before I saw him,” she said. Nicholson told the jury that after parking, she walked over to join Holder. “Eric was asking Nipsey, ‘Did you tell somebody I snitched?’” she recalled. The woman said she waited for them to finish their conversation before asking Hussle for a selfie. The photo was shown in court.

“I was just excited, I was just happy, I just wanted to show my Facebook friends,” she shared. Nicholson added that after the photo was taken, she went to her car to post it to social media. Holder then returned with food and asked her to circle the block. She noted that as she was doing that, he pulled a gun. “I was like, ‘What are you doing?’ You put that away, you ain’t going to shoot nothing outside my car,” Nicholson testified. “He did put it away.”

She added that they pulled into an alley to eat, but then Holder asked her not to go anywhere and got out of the car. Moments later, she heard gunshots. The woman testified that Holder was “power-walking” when he returned. “I was like, ‘What happened?,’” Nicholson shared. “He said, ”You talk too much. I ought to slap you. And he was just like, ‘Drive! Drive!’” she said.

Nicholson shared that she remained quiet for the drive and soon learned of Hussle’s death from the news. She added that comments from her selfie with the “Victory Lap” rapper pointed to Holder as a suspect. “Did it start to occur to you at that moment that Eric might have done it?” Deputy District Attorney John McKinney asked. She replied, “Yes.”

Until Monday, Nicholson’s identity was withheld from the public.

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