Randy Manning was originally found guilty and sentenced to life in 2014 for killing Rhian “Kampane” Stoute in Englewood three years earlier.
Manning got the state Supreme Court to support a lower court ruling overturning the conviction and granting him a new trial in 2020.
The verdicts this time were pretty much the same: Jurors found Manning guilty of murder, desecration and unlawful moving of human remains, arson, destroying evidence, lying to law enforcement and illegal gun possession, among other counts.
Senior Assistant Bergen County Prosecutor Danielle Grootenboer, who handled the first trial, and Assistant Prosecutor Gary Donatello secured the verdicts on Wednesday, June 7, following a six-week trial.
Grootenboer previously called Stoute’s murder “one of the most horrific crimes Bergen County has ever seen. While his remains were engulfed in flames, Manning picked his clothes off him, and stuffed them in a basin nearby.”
Manning shot the Brooklyn rapper dead with a .40-caliber Glock handgun in a vacant house on Tryon Avenue in Englewood on Aug. 15, 2011, then left, she said.
He returned several hours later and set Stoute’s body on fire, Grootenboer said.
Manning then hid the body in Stoute’s Chevy Tahoe, drove it to Paramus and left it on Village Circle, a cul-de-sac just off Forest Avenue near Van Saun Park that apparently had been chosen at random, investigators found.
Manning also discarded key pieces of evidence later discovered in sewers in both Paramus and Brooklyn, they said.
The 33-year-old rapper’s badly burned body was found in the back of the SUV. He’d been shot twice, with one of the bullets tearing into his shoulder and ripping through his heart.
A California driver's license that had Manning’s picture but a different name was found in the vehicle, investigators said.
Manning even reached out to police first -- telling them he wanted to know how the investigation was coming.
An interrogation by prosecutor’s detectives eventually secured a confession, authorities said.
What led to the shooting was never full explained, however.
Those who knew and loved Stoute said they’d have understood if he was “a real street person” and “a gang banger,” but all agreed that he wasn’t.
He counted Jay-Z among many hard-working people of integrity, they said.
Stoute’s goal, they said, was to get his mother a big house in a good neighborhood while working and caring for his grandfather.
Stout released two albums and several videos that showed tremendous promise.
Manning, a Trinidad and Tobago national who lived on Belmont Street in Englewood, apparently had been shopping at mall with Stoute the day before the murder.
Manning’s humanity “is not questionable,” Grootenboer had said. “It’s non-existent.
“For him to do what he did to Rhian, to continually lie – he has given up any shred of humanity,” she said. “To shoot another human being in the face and the head four times, to leave him alone in an isolated and abandoned house, to return and attempt to erase him from the face of the earth – that is a person who has no humanity.”
Superior Court Gary N. Wilcox scheduled sentencing for July 21, Bergen County Prosecutor Mark Musella said.
Grootenboer and Donatello were assisted by Detective William Diedtrich, Appellate Section Chief Assistant Prosecutor William Miller and Victim Advocates Susan Tanis and Michelle Churchill, the prosecutor said on Thursday.
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