Jimmy James Johnson,
the man accused of punching Aftermath CEO and producer Dr. Dre at the Vibe Awards,
told police that Marion “Suge” Knight paid him $5,000 to assault the
producer as he accepted his Lifetime Achievement Award.
Johnson allegedly told the Santa Monica, California police that Knight
hired and paid him to carry out the attack in an attempt to embarrass Dr. Dre,
born Andre Young.
Johnson, 26, is facing a life sentence due to previous felonies.
Knight also allegedly agreed to forgive Johnson’s brother’s debt
if he carried out the assault.
After punching Dre, Johnson was allegedly stabbed by G-Unit/Aftermath
artist Young Buck, who pleaded not-guilty to assault charges on Friday (January
"We will have that explanation [for the punch] in court,"
Johnson’s attorney told the New York Post.
Johnson allegedly told police that he attended the awards with
Knight’s lawyer denied the allegations, stating "there
is absolutely no truth to it. I am so confident that there is no issue.”
Authorities started investigating Knight’s possible involvement
in the melee shortly after the Vibe Awards, which took place last November.
During the melee, camera’s caught a composed Knight sitting
during the fracas. Authorities were seeking to see if Knight violated his probation
due to his proximity to Dr. Dre, who has a restraining order against his former
partner in the Death Row record label, which included such artists as Snoop
Dogg, Tha Dogg Pound, Dr. Dre and Tupac Shakur.
Knight vehemently denied any involvement immediately after the
about me, if I do something wrong, I claim it,” Knight said. “I’m
not no snitch, I’m not no rat, I’m not the kind of guy who just
wants to start stuff.”