Corey Walker, the only adult defendant charged in the 2020 murder of rapper Pop Smoke, just had his trial date postponed to early August after plea negotiations with prosecutors broke down. Originally set to begin next week, the trial will begin with jury selection on August 6 and is expected to last three and a half weeks.

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In a report from Rolling Stone, Walker’s lawyer, Deion Benjamin, told the publication, “Negotiations fell through, but there’s still a possibility we’ll come to an agreement.”

Adding, “A few things need to be ironed out. If they don’t get resolved, we’ll go to trial.”


Walker, 23, has pleaded not guilty to charges of murder, robbery, and burglary. Initially, prosecutors suggested he could face the death penalty because Pop Smoke was killed during an alleged robbery, but current DA George Gascón’s policy opposes seeking the death penalty. If convicted, Walker could receive a life sentence. 

Three other defendants, including the 15-year-old shooter, were charged as juveniles. The shooter admitted in May 2023 that he killed Pop Smoke, born Bashar Barakah Jackson, during a home invasion on February 19, 2020. The eldest juvenile, 17 at the time, pleaded guilty to voluntary manslaughter and home invasion robbery in April 2023. The third juvenile, 16, settled his case and was sent to a juvenile housing facility. All three are expected to be held until they turn 25. Not harsh sentences for committing the worst crimes in this case, whether they are juveniles or not. Just saying. 

Walker was 19 at the time of the incident. So he was grown. Prosecutors allege he “facilitated the crimes by not only surveilling the crime scene but also serving as the researcher, getaway driver, weapons provider, and planner of the home invasion robbery.” His previous lawyer, Christopher Darden, argued Walker did not plan the crime and was merely the getaway driver who “remained outside seated in the driver’s seat” during the incident.

During the heinous home invasion, the juvenile defendants, some wearing ski masks, accessed an outdoor balcony and entered Pop Smoke’s upstairs bedroom while he was showering. They allegedly communicated with Walker via cell phone during the robbery, which ended with Jackson being pistol-whipped and shot three times in the back with a Beretta 9mm semiautomatic pistol.

Get this: a police detective testified that Walker’s Google account researched the rental home before the crime and searched for “Rolex oyster perpetual datejust” shortly after the 911 call was made. The robbers allegedly stole Pop Smoke’s diamond-studded Rolex and sold it for $2,000. So they allegedly took that man’s life and destroyed his family’s lives, for what? Two racks? Disgusting.

Darden, in his 2021 filing, argued Walker was “not a major participant” and did not share the shooter’s intent to kill, stating, “It is clear from the evidence that [Walker] did not enter the house, was not armed, and did not personally kill the victim.” Got it. Not a major participant. What ya’ll think? Throw the book at him or nah?

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