After years of silence, witness names Jam Master Jay’s alleged killer in court

Jam Master Jay’s close friend described the Run-DMC founder’s final moments in his Queens music studio — and, after years of silence, pointed the finger Wednesday at the man he says pulled the trigger.

Uriel “Tony” Rincon testified in Brooklyn Federal Court that he sat inches away from the 37-year-old icon, born Jason Mizell, and watched as Karl Jordan Jr. greeted him with a “half-handshake” and, in a flash, shot him in the head.

“That’s when I heard a couple of shots,” Rincon told the jury at the murder trial of Jordan, nicknamed “Little D,” and alleged accomplice Ronald “Tinard” Washington. The duo are accused of killing Mizell because they were cut out of a drug deal.

“I see Jay just fall, ’cause his back was to me at that time. … As Jay was falling, I see Jordan shrug Jay off of him,” Rincon said.

Karl Jordan
Karl Jordan Jr.

Sitting on the witness stand, Rincon dabbed tears from his eyes as he described that bloody October 2002 night, and told prosecutor Mark Misorek he was too scared to come forward, even though he recognized both Jordan and Washington.

Rincon, who grew up in Kew Gardens, said he met Mizell, at age 17 through a mutual friend in Queens.

“He kind of served as a mentor when I was in high school,” Rincon said.

They stayed close for about eight years, and Rincon would work for him, organizing events and picking up and dropping off artists visiting Mizell’s 24/7 Studio on Merrick Blvd. in Hollis.

Though he was taking college classes and working full time, the studio was the epicenter of Rincon’s life, where he’d help with music production and relax with Mizell and others, talking, eating meals, playing görüntü games and hanging out.

On Oct. 30, 2002, he was doing just that, sitting on a green couch in the lounge, playing Madden football with Mizell, talking about promoting “Rusty Waters” — a new music group featuring Mizell’s childhood friend and business partner Randy Allen, and the DJ’s cousin, who went by the nickname Bo Scaggs.

Allen was in the studio’s control room, with a young woman who showed up to promote her music.

Members of the rap group Run-DMC pose at the second Annual MTV Video Music Awards, Sept. 13,1985. Left to right: DMC, Run, and Jam-Master Jay. (AP Photo/Mario Suriani)
Members of the rap group Run-DMC pose at the second Annual MTV Görüntü Music Awards, Sept. 13,1985. Left to right: DMC, Run, and Jam Master Jay. (AP Photo/Mario Suriani)

Mizell’s manager and Allen’s sister, Lydia High, was in the same lounge as Mizell and Rincon. An aspiring rapper, “Mike B,” was either in the control room or a separate studio recording room, Rincon recalled.

Mizell brought a gun with him, taking it out of his bag and placing it on the armrest of his couch, Rincon said.

But he never reached for it when Jordan came through, wearing a hoodie, according to Rincon.

“I kind of look to my left, and basically I see the door come right open, and then I see Mr. Jordan come through the door,” Rincon said.

Rincon said he knew who Jordan was, explaining, “I’d seen his face a few times.”

“Did you have any trouble seeing his face?” Misorek asked, and Rincon responded, “Nah. I saw his profile, a little bit of his tattoo on his neck.”

FILE - The body of Jason Mizell, a.k.a. Jam Master Jay, a member of the pioneering rap trio Run DMC, is removed from a recording studio where he was shot and killed, Wednesday, Oct. 30, 2002 in the Queens borough of New York. Opening statements are set for Monday in the federal murder trial of Karl Jordan Jr. and Ronald Washington, who were arrested in 2020 for the murder of Jam Master Jay.(AP Photo/Newsday, Ken Sawchuk)
The body of Jason Mizell, a.k.a. Jam Master Jay, a member of the pioneering rap trio Run DMC, is removed from a recording studio where he was shot and killed, Wednesday, Oct. 30, 2002 in Queens. (AP Photo/Newsday, Ken Sawchuk)

Rincon got a call from his mother on his cell phone right as he heard Mizell, “Oh s—!” and heard two or three shots, he said. Washington was standing by the studio door, yelling at High to stay down, he said.

One of the bullets went through Rincon’s left leg, above the knee. “When Little D shrugged Jay off, he turned the other way, turned toward his left, and just out,” Rincon said. “It was maybe 10 to 15 seconds.”

Allen ran out of the control room and grabbed Mizell’s gun to follow the duo, toward the rear fire escape, Rincon said. Rincon added that he tried to tend to his wound and rouse Mizell, “shaking him, asking him, is he OK, can he talk. And he is not responding.”

When the police arrived, Rincon said he didn’t know who the gunman was. “I was scared. There was just a lot of things going on at one time. I was just surprised at who I saw and what happened,” he said.

He told Allen he recognized Jordan and Washington, but otherwise he kept that detail to himself for close to 15 years.

Rincon and his mother attended Mizell’s funeral at Ferncliff Cemetery in Hartsdale, and after the ceremony, Jordan and two of his friends approached them, he recounted. “[He] basically asked me if I saw who did it. I said no,” Rincon said. “I felt uncomfortable, like he was probing if I saw him.”

Rincon finally loosened up after police and the FBI came calling toward the end of 2016, and testified before a federal grand jury in 2017. “I felt that his wife and his children needed closure, and they should know what took place,” he said.

NYPD officers are pictured after Jam Master Jay was shot and killed in a recording studio on Merrick Blvd. (Ken Murray / New York Daily News)
NYPD officers are pictured after Jam Master Jay was shot and killed in a recording studio on Merrick Blvd. (Ken Murray / New York Daily News)

Jordan and Washington’s lawyers tried to paint Rincon as a liar, pointing out that even though he said he wanted to help police solve the crime, he maintained for years he didn’t know the shooter — including in a 2007 interview with a Daily News reporter.

“Your friend, Jam Master Jay, is on the floor dying, right?” Jordan’s lawyer Mark DeMarco asked Rincon. “You refused to tell the police who killed your friend?”

“I was scared,” Rincon said.

As for the funeral encounter, DeMarco asked about Jordan, “He wasn’t armed?” “He didn’t threaten you?” and “He only asked you what you saw?”

“Correct,” Rincon responded, adding about the funeral, “He was the only one who asked me what I saw.”

Leave a Comment

backlink satın al deneme bonusu veren siteler