Two men have been indicted in the 2002 murder of Run-DMC's Jam Master Jay. According to CBS News, Karl Jordan Jr. will be arraigned on murder charges on Monday afternoon, and Ronald Washington will be arraigned sometime later in the week. Jordan will reportedly be arraigned on other charges as well.
Jay — real name: Jason "Jay" Mizell — was shot and killed on Oct. 20, 2002, while in his recording studio. According to court filings, prosecutors allege that Jordan pulled the trigger and shot Jay in the head. At the same time, Washington allegedly "provided cover for his associate to shoot and kill" the beloved DJ and music producer. Washington was said to have been staying with Jay in the days leading up to his death. While the case has gone unsolved for years, Washington has long been thought to be a possible suspect in the crime. Notably, he is currently behind bars already, serving a federal prison sentence stemming from a serious of robberies he committed while running from the authorities in the wake of Jay's murder.
Police had been able to identify at least four people who were in Jay's studio the day of the shooting, including both armed gunmen, but the assailants were said to be masked, and no witnesses ever came forward in the 18 years since. Jay's friends and the city of New York offered up to $60,000 in reward money for information leading to arrests, but still, no one came forward. It's also notable that those closest to Jay were not keen on his connection to Washington, as the convicted felon had once been linked to the shooting death of Randy Walker, a known associate of Tupac Shakur.
Born in 1965 in Brooklyn, Jay was most well known as being the DJ for legendary hip-hop group Run D.M.C., who rose to fame in the 1980s. The group is widely credited with bringing rap to the mainstream music world. In 1989, he established Jam Master Jay Records, and later went on to sign 50 Cent, who had been a sort-of protegee of Jay's in the mid-90s. Following Jay's death, the record label folded, but Jay's musical legacy lives on with Scratch DJ Academy in Manhattan, which was created to "provide unparalleled education and access to the art form of the DJ and producer." Upon his death, Jay left behind a wife and three children.