LOS ANGELES — A former girlfriend of the accused Nipsey Hussle’s killer testified Monday that she saw the murder suspect load bullets into a gun outside his South Los Angeles store shortly before the beloved rapper’s death.
Bryannita Nicholson, who admitted on the witness stand to being intimate with shooter Eric Holder, also testified that she heard their previous affair say, “Did you say I ratted out,” before he died March 31 before his marathon Clothing store stormed away from Hussle, 2019.
Nicholson and Holder, 32, were in the area that day after she drove him to a restaurant that was in the same mall as Hussle’s store. They saw the rapper.
During her testimony in Los Angeles Superior Court, Nicholson said she was excited to see Hussle, but Holder jumped out of her car first to speak to the 33-year-old rapper.
“I saw him as soon as I pulled into the parking lot and I was like, ‘Oh, there goes Nipsey! He’s fine! … Eric (Holder) was shirtless when he got out and went to Nipsey.”
Nicholson said she heard Holder say in a loud voice to Hussle, “Did you say I stole,” before walking away from the rapper and two other men.
When asked by senior assistant district attorney John McKinney if she sensed a fight brewing, Nicholson said, “No, it hadn’t crossed my mind at all.”
Nicholson said she posed for a photo with Hussle while Holder picked up his food.
When they both got back in the car, Holder told Nicholson to drive around the block twice, she testified.
The second time she passed the Marathon store parking lot, Nicholson said she saw Holder loading his guns.
“As we came around the block, I (sic) saw him putting bullets in the automatic gun,” Nicholson said. “That was the black one. .. When he did, I said, ‘What are you doing?! You’re not going to shoot that out of my car!’ Then he put it away.”
Nicholson said Holder then directed them to turn onto Crenshaw Boulevard and park in an alley. She said Holder then ate two more bites of his chili cheese fries before jumping out and telling her to wait in the car.
Nicholson said Holder didn’t seem upset as he walked down the alley.
“I just thought he was going to get a shirt or something,” she said at Hussle’s store.
A few minutes later, Nicholson said she heard gunshots. She said she was considering leaving the area but was concerned Holder was injured.
When Holder returned to her car, Nicholson said she saw he was carrying two guns — a black semi-automatic and a chrome-plated revolver.
She said Holder yelled at her to drive away from the alley and saw him put the guns in a bag.
“I didn’t even think he was going to use it,” Nicholson said, referring to the firearms.
Nicholson testified that she and Holder were intimate, but she only considered him a “homeboy,” whom she still got to know after meeting a month ago.
Nicholson said she didn’t know Holder might have been involved in the shooting until he spent the night and saw news of Hussle’s death.
“I asked him about it again … he didn’t say too much and went out on the balcony, smoked marijuana and fell asleep. That was it,” Nicholson said.
Nicholson will comment again on Tuesday.
In his opening remarks, McKinney said Hussle was outside his Marathon Clothing store when Holder approached him and opened fire with a semi-automatic weapon in his left hand and a revolver in his right.
It was “a very personal attack,” McKinney told the jury.
Public defender Aaron Jansen admitted in his opening statement that Holder shot Hussle but denied it was intentional. Hussle, he said, “Mr. Holder accused of being a spy,” and then shot the rapper in the heat of passion.