Kidd Creole: hip-hop pioneer found guilty of first-degree manslaughter

The Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five member faces a potential 25-year sentence for fatally stabbing a homeless man in 2017

Kidd Creole, AKA Nathaniel Glover, being arraigned in New York, 3 August 2017.
Kidd Creole, AKA Nathaniel Glover, being arraigned in New York, 3 August 2017. Photograph: Steven Hirsch/AP

Hip-hop pioneer Kidd Creole has been found guilty of first-degree manslaughter for stabbing a homeless man in 2017.

The musician, real name Nathaniel Glover, 62, was an original member of Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five alongside his brother Melle Mel, AKA Melvin Glover. (He is not associated with Kid Creole and the Coconuts, the band led by August Darnell.)

On 1 August 2017, he had a run-in with a 55-year-old homeless man named John Jolly, whom he believed was attempting to solicit him for sex. Glover stabbed Jolly, who later died in hospital.

When he was arrested the day after the assault on a charge of second-degree murder, Glover admitted to the attack during a videotaped police interview, although he was unaware at the time of Jolly’s death.

“To tell the truth, I thought he was gay and because I thought he was gay, and he was saying that to me, ‘what’s up,’ I was thinking that he was thinking I was gay,” Glover told police. “So I was a little annoyed by that.

“He approached me. I got a little nervous. So then I tried to back up a little bit, and he moved forward, and then I just took the knife and stabbed him … I wish I never would have seen him. It’s all my fault, because I chose to stab him. I have to take responsibility for that.”

Prosecutors alleged that Glover’s motives were homophobic. His lawyers said he stabbed Jolly out of fear and argued that Jolly’s medical records did not support the allegation that he had died of a stab wound, and claimed that a combination of alcohol and hospital-administered sedatives had in fact contributed to Jolly’s death.

A Manhattan jury came to the guilty verdict within hours of lawyers on both sides presenting their closing arguments, Rolling Stone reports.

Glover will be sentenced on 4 May and faces a maximum of 25 years in prison. He had previously been working as a handyman and security guard in Manhattan.

… we have a small favour to ask. Tens of millions have placed their trust in the Guardian’s fearless journalism since we started publishing 200 years ago, turning to us in moments of crisis, uncertainty, solidarity and hope. More than 1.5 million supporters, from 180 countries, now power us financially – keeping us open to all, and fiercely independent.

Unlike many others, the Guardian has no shareholders and no billionaire owner. Just the determination and passion to deliver high-impact global reporting, always free from commercial or political influence. Reporting like this is vital for democracy, for fairness and to demand better from the powerful.

And we provide all this for free, for everyone to read. We do this because we believe in information equality. Greater numbers of people can keep track of the global events shaping our world, understand their impact on people and communities, and become inspired to take meaningful action. Millions can benefit from open access to quality, truthful news, regardless of their ability to pay for it.

If there were ever a time to join us, it is now. Every contribution, however big or small, powers our journalism and sustains our future