Lanez, who is currently incarcerated at a California prison and has recently hired new legal representation, has petitioned for a re-sentencing regarding his conviction, according to court reporter Meghann Cuniff.
The filing contains a number of other arguments, including that Tory’s “childhood trauma” should be considered by the appellate court and that his status as a non-American citizen who now faces deportation to Canada counts as discrimination.
The petition will be considered at the same time as the rapper’s appeal, with an opening brief scheduled for Boxing Day (December 26). It is unlikely the court will rule on the matter for a number of months.
Los Angeles attorney David Zarmi, a certified appellate specialist who is not involved in the case, reviewed the petition for Legal Affairs and Trials and said “it seems unlikely the Court would accept this.”
“This would ordinarily be an ineffective assistance of counsel argument, which they don’t raise in a way that the Court would consider it, and which would normally be accompanied by a declaration for trial counsel describing his motives,” Zarmi said.
“They are being creative by arguing that because nobody bothered to check what [Tory Lanez’s bodyguard, Jaquan] Smith’s testimony would be before trial counsel stipulated that Smith would not testify.
“However, there is no declaration attached to indicate that trial counsel did not know what Smith’s testimony would be. Nor is there even a declaration from the defendant. It seems unlikely the Court would accept this.”
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Earlier this week, Lanez’s bodyguard/driver Jaquan Smith filed a sworn statement regarding the July 2020 shooting. Smith had not testified during the trial.
In his statement, Smith said he “did not see who shot the weapon” but claimed that he witnessed Tory trying to wrestle the gun from Kelsey Harris, Megan Thee Stallion’s former friend and assistant, before the shots rang out.