Chaka Zulu - Ludacris’ longtime manager - turned himself in to police after he was officially charged with murder in a June shooting where he was also shot. The latest details inside…
Chaka Zulu - the longtime manager of rapper Ludacris - is speaking out after he was charged with murder.
The shooting killed 23-year-old ArtezJamilBenton, who was a DeKalb County native and a recent college graduate.
The music executive - whose real name is Ahmed Obafemi - was charged with murder, aggravated assault, possession of a firearm during the commission of a crime, and simple battery after a late night shooting at Afro-Caribbean restaurant APT 4B in Buckhead.
The 52-year-old turned turned himself in on Tuesday at the Fulton County Jail where he was booked and bonded out the same day.He was released on $200,000 bond, according to jail records.
In a statement, Chaka’s lawyer, GabeBanks, said his client acted in self defense when he discharged his a weapon, which he is licensed to carry. He shared his client had been attacked by “a gang of at least (4) individuals” as he was stomped, punched and kicked, so he "had every right to defend himself.” He also said Chaka is “still recovering from the nearly fatal injuries he sustained that evening.”
Read his full statement below:
Mr. Chaka Zulu, a beloved son of the City of Atlanta, is disappointed in the Atlanta Police Department's decision to bring charges against him surrounding the shooting that occurred in June 2022.
A close review of all of the evidence, including the surveillance footage and eyewitness interviews, reveal that Mr. Zulu was attacked and jumped from behind by a gang of at least four (4) individuals (sadly including the decedent) and was forced to defend himself after this gang repeatedly stomped, punched, and kicked him while he was on the ground in a defenseless posture. Mr.
Zulu was shot in the back during the shooting and nearly lost his life, and is still recovering from the nearly fatal injuries he sustained that evening.
Mr. Zulu was at his place of business that night and had every right to defend himself. In an attempt to save his life, Mr. Zulu lawfully discharged his weapon in self-defense, a weapon that he was licensed to carry. Mr. Zulu fully cooperated with law enforcement officials and their investigation, and voluntarily turned himself in once he learned of the arrest warrants. Mr. Zulu remains confident that his name will be cleared of these charges through the judicial process. It is not lost on Mr. Zulu that someone lost his life, but had Mr. Zulu not lawfully defended himself, Mr. Zulu would have been killed that night.
The statement was posted to Chaka's official IG account with the caption, "A statement from Gabe Banks legal counsel for Mr. Chaka Zulu. Mr. Zulu will not be commenting on this matter further and asks for privacy during this time."
Tons of celebs showed him support in the comments:
Former Atlanta Mayor KasimReed served as a spokesman for Artez’s family after the shooting, while Zulu remained hospitalized.
“We are fortunate to report that Chaka Zulu is in stable condition and recovering,” Reed said at the time. “The family thanks everyone for their well wishes and prayers, and asks for their privacy at this time. He did everything right,” his father, Artis Benton, told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution after the shooting. " I never thought that this would be the end for him.”
“We just want justice for Artez,” ArteriaBenton, his older sister, told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution after the shooting. “That’s the main thing we want. So if you see something, say something please.”
Such an unfortunate and unnecessary situation. Prayers for everyone involved.
Photos: AP Photo/John Amis, File/ Fulton County Sheriff's Office