Trial Begins for Suspects Charged in the Grisly Murder of Run-DMC’s Jam Master Jay Nearly 22 Years Ago

New York, New York – Nearly 22 years after the murder of Run-DMC’s DJ Jam Master Jay, the trial against his alleged killers, Ronald Washington and Karl Jordan Jr, is set to begin on Monday, January 29, 2024, in Brooklyn Federal Court.

Both men were charged in August 2020 in connection with the 2002 murder of Jason Mizell, also known as Jam Master Jay. Washington and Jordan are facing charges related to murder, narcotics trafficking, and firearm-related offenses. The trial comes after years of speculation and theories about the motive behind Mizell’s killing, which was described by prosecutors as an “ambush and execution of a renowned musician and prominent member of the community.”

According to federal prosecutors, the two men entered Mizell’s recording studio in Jamaica, Queens, on October 30, 2002, with guns, and Jordan allegedly fired two shots at close range, killing Mizell and injuring another person in the studio.

The case also saw the emergence of a new suspect, Jay Bryant, who was charged in May 2023 with the murder. Bryant’s trial is set for 2026, and he has been accused of leaving behind a piece of clothing with his DNA at the crime scene.

The prosecution alleges that Washington and Jordan were involved in a dispute with Mizell over a narcotics deal, leading to the decision to kill him. The long delay between their indictment and trial is attributed to the challenges associated with bringing the case to court.

Eyewitnesses at Mizell’s studio identified the suspects, and both men have been accused of attempting to intimidate witnesses and obstruct justice. The case has also brought to light evidence of Jordan’s involvement in narcotics trafficking, including photographs and videos depicting drug dealing and possession of firearms.

Both defendants have pleaded not guilty to the charges, and if found guilty, each faces a minimum of 20 years to life in federal prison. Despite the seriousness of the charges, the Attorney General has directed federal prosecutors not to seek the death penalty in this case.