Jury Convicts Hosea Thomas In Murder Case Of T.I.’s Friend and Assistant
On Wednesday (November 26), in less than a day’s time, a Hamilton County jury rendered a guilty verdict in the murder trial of Hosea Thomas, 35, the man accused of the 2006 shooting death of rapper T.I.’s friend and personal assistant, Philant Johnson, 26.
Thomas was convicted of all 11 counts facing him, including murder, five counts of felonious assault and illegally having a gun after a felony conviction, according to the Cincinnati Enquirer.
T.I. took the witness stand on Friday and gave his videotaped testimony telling jurors that he was sure that the shots fired at his van from another vehicle, were meant for him, and not for his friends or entourage.
According to the prosecutor, Seth Tieger, Hosea Thomas became angry after he was denied access to the VIP room at the Club Ritz in Cincinnati on a night T.I. and rapper Yung Joc were appearing at an afterparty. The VIP area which Thomas was used to hanging out in was roped off for T.I. and this provoked Thomas’ anger which led to a scuffle resulting in Thomas being hit in the head with a liquor bottle. According to testimonies, after the incident at the club, T.I.’s entourage left, and Thomas along with his older brother, Padron Thomas at the wheel, gave chase in their Jeep Grand Cherokee, with friend, Mose Patrick Brown, 17, in the backseat. At some point in the chase, the jeep pulled alongside T.I.’s van, and Thomas began firing which resulted in Philant Johnson’s death, according to Tieger.
Afterwards, Brown, the friend in the backseat, allegedly was paid $800 to stay quiet about the incident but would later go to police with his story after allegedly contemplating suicide over the distraught of the killing. Padron Thomas would also later agree to testify against his brother in exchange for a more lenient sentence.
Meanwhile, Hosea Thomas is scheduled to be sentenced on December 23 and faces a minimum of 20 years in prison.