FAIRFAX COUNTY, Va. — The lawyer for a D.C. rapper accused of firing shots inside a crowded mall over Father's Day weekend is now claiming his client acted in self-defense.
Prosecutors say 22-year-old Noah Settles, who goes by the name "No Savage" in YouTube videos viewed millions of times, fired three shots in the middle of Tysons Corner Mall on June 18, sending hundreds of shoppers running for their lives. No one was shot.
Several family members were in the courtroom for Settles' preliminary hearing Monday. His father is arguing Settles was just trying to protect himself.
"They also proved two other people had weapons that day," Settles' father, Anthony Royal, said. "They just don't have them in custody."
Police said Settles had been in a fight earlier with rival D.C. gang members. In court, defense attorney Peter Greenspun said if Settles fired those three shots, it was merely reckless, not malicious, as prosecutors allege.
"If that's what you're saying, anyone who fires a shot is malicious," Royal said.
Fairfax County police detective Adam Mancini testified that whoever Settles was firing at was retreating and walking away. In a heated exchange with Greenspun, Mancini said that while two other men may have had weapons, Settles was the first to pull his out.
Police have yet to arrest anyone else in the case.
Fairfax County General District Court Judge Todd Zinicola found probable cause to send the charges, including malicious discharging of a weapon and attempted malicious wounding, to a grand jury.
"People need to know you cannot come into Fairfax County and shoot up a mall and expect to walk out with anything by a very stiff prison sentence," Fairfax County Commonwealth's Attorney Steve Descano said.
If convicted of these five counts, Noah Settles faces up to 43 years in prison.
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