C-Murder’s talent on the mic will have to speak for itself, according to the judge presiding over the rapper’s second-degree murder case.
Louisiana’s Times-Picayune reports that C-Murder (born Corey Miller) can take pictures to promote his upcoming album as long as it’s done at the location where he is currently under house arrest.
“I don’t have a problem with the photographs,” said 24th Judicial District Court Judge Martha Sassone, who also ruled Monday (Oct. 23) that Miller’s attorney Ron Rakosky must be present during the photo shoot and know in advance the name of the photographer’s name.
Rakosky cited money for Miller’s legal defense and the renovation of his grandmother’s New Orleans home as the reason why the rapper should be allowed to promote the untitled album.
In addition, Miller needs the money from the release to help support his three children, he said.
“All that has a substantial cost,” said Rakosky, who felt that a denial of the request “would handicap his ability to make funds.”
Roskosky’s plea did not sit well with assistant District Attorney Roger Jordan, who argued that Sassone set Miller’s bail in March only so he could help prepare his defense.
Despite her approval of the photo shoot, Sassone reminded both lawyers of the gag order surrounding the case as she rejected requests from Miller and his publicist.
“There’ll be no interviews, no music videos,” she ruled. “I guess the music will have to speak for itself. Capitol Records will have to find another way to advertise it.”
The order is the latest chapter in the continuing saga surrounding Miller, who is accused of killing 16-year-old Steve Thomas on Jan. 12, 2002, at a now-closed club in Harvey.
Although the 35-year-old rapper was convicted of second degree murder, he was awarded a new trial in March after the state Supreme Court affirmed an earlier ruling by Sassone tossing out the conviction.
The decision was rendered after Sassone discovered that prosecutors withheld criminal background information on their witnesses from Miller’s defense attorneys.
As a result, Miller’s bail was set at $500,000.
The rapper was later ordered to serve house arrest as a condition of the bond.
A gag order was also put in place to keep pretrial publicity to a minimum.
Miller will be on house arrest until Feb. 26, the date of his trial.
During Monday’s hearing, Jordan further noted the irony of Miller’s promotion request, which comes as he seeks a change of venue for his trial because of the pretrial publicity.
To honor the request “would be so improper” in the eyes of Thomas’ family and the community, Jordan stated.
In addition to the photo shoot, Sassone granted Miller some time to play with his children in his back yard.
The entertainer’s house arrest permits him to remain inside his home, according to the Times-Picayune.