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Hot! The Family Of McKinley “Mac” Phipps Wants New Trial For Rapper Convicted Of Manslaughter

The family of a man who was convicted of manslaughter wants him to get a new trial.  McKinley Phipps has been in prison since 2001.

“And we are hoping that St. Tammany can see it in their hearts to try to make a change in the verdict that was reached,” Phipps’ father, McKinley Phipps, Sr., said Thursday afternoon outside the courthouse in St. Tammany Parish.

Phipps, Jr is a rapper.  In February of 2000, he was part of a show at the Club Mercedes in the Slidell area.  There was a fight at the club and a gunshot that left one man dead.

The family’s request comes after a new, online report by the Huffington Post.  In it, witnesses say they were pressured by prosecutors to say they saw the rapper pull the trigger.

The case is also being watched by Louisiana United International, a group that works to free people who are unjustly convicted and serving time.

“How can we sleep at night if one person in Louisiana is in prison and we know they’re innocent?” asked Lloyd Kelly, a member of the group, also at the courthouse on Thursday.

St. Tammany District Attorney Warren Montgomery released a statement on the case.  It reads,

“Certainly no one wants to see an innocent person remain in jail. But there is a procedure for correcting injustices for those who feel they have been treated unfairly. That procedure is to petition the court with evidence.  The court will evaluate the credibility, reliability, and relevance of the evidence.  At that time, I will fulfill my responsibility to respond to the allegations.”

The Phipps family says they have exhausted all of their legal options.  The Louisiana United International group wants any witnesses who feel they were pressured to make their claims at the courthouse where they could have a greater impact on the case.

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