Patrick Xavier Clark, the man accused of fatally shooting Takeoff last year, appeared in court yesterday (Oct. 26) and maintained his innocence in the case, according to Rolling Stone.

His lawyer, Letitia Quinones-Hollins, told the publication that he’s claiming self-defense ahead of the murder trial, which could officially begin in the second half of 2024. “He maintains his innocence. We do believe that he has a valid self-defense claim. I don’t think they can say with any degree of certainty that it was Patrick who actually fired the shot that took Takeoff’s life,” she said.

“There was someone else who started the shooting, it was not Patrick Clark. He was in the same position that Takeoff was in, he was trying to get out of there alive as well. He didn’t have anything to do with the argument that occurred. He just happened to be in the wrong place at the wrong time when people started firing weapons.” Clark’s next court date is scheduled for Jan. 23, 2024.

As previously reported by REVOLT, Takeoff was shot and killed outside of a private event at a Houston bowling alley on Nov. 1, 2022. An argument over a dice game led to the incident as two others were hit by the gunfire, but, luckily, they survived. According to Sgt. Michael Burrow, the Migos rapper was not a part of the verbal dispute.

“The event was a private party. There was a lucrative dice game that went on at the event. There was an argument that happened afterward outside the bowling alley, which led to the shooting,” he said during a press conference. “I can tell you that Takeoff was not involved in playing the dice game, he was not involved in the argument that happened outside, he was not armed. He was an innocent bystander.”