ST. LOUIS – Jurors formally acquitted a rapper in a St. Louis murder case that authorities previously described as a road-rage killing.
After two hours of deliberation Thursday, a jury found Michael Henderson, 19, not guilty of first-degree murder and armed criminal action charges in the shooting death of Joseph Shaw.
According to the 22nd Judicial Circuit Court of Missouri, Henderson is also known by his rap name CTS Luh Wick. He has appeared in several online music videos featuring guns and cash.
Shaw died in a shooting on Aug. 26, 2022, in St. Louis’ Mount Pleasant neighborhood.
Police claimed that Henderson fired several shots from a motorbike after he exchanged words with Shaw, who was driving a Jeep along South Broadway at Nebraska Avenue.
Surveillance video reportedly showed Henderson riding next to the Jeep before speeding ahead, turning, and opening fire on the Jeep. Investigators say Shaw died after he was shot in the head.
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Henderson testified at trial earlier this week that he shot Shaw in self-defense after clipping the Jeep in traffic. He said he saw a passenger in Shaw’s Jeep point a gun at him and believed he would be shot.
Prosecutors argued that Henderson’s actions did not amount to reasonable self-defense and that he murdered Shaw because he was angry about losing a game of chicken. A defense lawyer told jurors that prosecutors failed to prove the killing was not in self-defense.