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NBA Lil Pap reluctantly accepts plea deal in Gee Money murder trial

A man who has been charged with second-degree murder in connection with the death of Baton Rouge rapper Gee Money has accepted a plea deal. He will now spend significantly less time in prison after accepting lesser charges.

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According to the attorney, Deandre Demarcus Fields, 28, nicknamed “NBA Lil Pap,” an associate of local rap artist NBA Youngboy, worked with prosecutors Monday, Jan. 23 to secure a plea deal. Now, two years later, that murder charge has been reduced to an accessory charge and he only has five years in prison.

It was originally alleged by the state that NBA Lil Pap, who is on a rival rap crew with the deceased, shot and killed Gee Money in September 2017 while he was outside of his Dallas Drive music studio.

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19th Circuit Court Judge Michael McDonald said, “With this agreement, the conviction and charges have been significantly reduced from what they were.”

East Baton Rouge Township District Attorney Hillar Moore said as a result of the murder, other issues with violence and aftermath of gang activity made it difficult for his office to fully prosecute Lil Pap, particularly since Donovan Cortez Jefferson, the Gee’s key witness Money’s murder, has since been arrested on his own murder charges.

A July 2020 charge filed in November 2019, two years after he said he saw NBA Lil Pap kill Gee Money, fatally shot 41-year-old Derek Jones at an apartment on Jim Taylor Drive. The 34-year-old is scheduled to appear in court on March 27.

“This (Jefferson’s) arrest posed a serious problem to the successful trial of Deandre Fields, as the state’s eyewitness himself was charged with murder,” Moore said in a statement. “There was no direct information other than some circumstantial evidence establishing beyond a reasonable doubt that Fields was responsible for this murder.”

Moore continued, “Under the circumstances, the state was unable to resolve this matter under the circumstances. My office discussed these issues with Mr. Burton’s family before granting this request.”

For Fields, he still maintains his innocence and initially did not want to accept the deal. He told his lawyers, “I can’t take time for something I didn’t do.”

“I’m going to agree to the deal, but I want to say for the record that I’m 100% innocent,” he told the judge, an outburst that contradicted the deal agreement.

“Well, if you’re not guilty, you’re not guilty,” McDonald said.

“It is in my best interest to accept the request,” he replied.

But after some persuasion, he took it, saying that while he was “100 percent innocent,” he didn’t want to risk a life sentence on the death penalty. It was a risk he just couldn’t take.

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