The latest indictment in the Jam Master Jay murder case marks a long-awaited progression in an investigation that has languished for years. (Credit: AP Photo Mark Lennihan)

By Stacy M. Brown,
NNPA Newswire Senior National Correspondent,

In a significant development, federal prosecutors in the Eastern District of New York announced on Tuesday that a third man would face charges in the 2002 shooting death of Run-DMC star Jam Master Jay.

The latest indictment marks a long-awaited progression in a case that has languished for years, bringing renewed hope for justice.

Jay Bryant, 49, has been named the new defendant in the death of Jason Mizell, the renowned musician professionally known as Jam Master Jay.

This superseding indictment follows the prior charges brought against Ronald Washington and Karl Jordan Jr. in Aug. 2020, as authorities relentlessly pursued leads to solve the murder of the hip-hop icon. Jay was tragically shot in the head inside his Jamaica, New York, recording studio on Oct. 30, 2002. His death, which occurred several years after the murders of Tupac Shakur and the Notorious B.I.G., shocked the music world. Hip hop royalty, including Public Enemy’s Chuck D, Queen Latifah, Russell Simmons, and Jay’s Run-DMC bandmates, later gathered for his funeral just blocks away from where Jay was murdered in Queens.

Previously, when a grand jury indicted Washington and Jordan Jr., law enforcement officials revealed that Jay’s death resulted from a bad drug deal.

In a letter filed with the court, prosecutors elaborated on the events surrounding the shooting.

They asserted that Bryant and the two previously indicted men entered the building on that fateful evening and fled immediately after the incident.

Their evidence includes eyewitness accounts of Bryant entering Jay’s recording studio and DNA belonging to Bryant recovered at the crime scene.

Jam Master Jay served as the DJ and chief part of the iconic hip-hop group Run-DMC, alongside Joseph “Run” Simmons and Darryl “DMC” McDaniel, during the early 1980s.

Their groundbreaking contributions brought hip-hop music to the forefront of popular culture.

Some of the group’s most notable hits include “It’s Like That,” “It’s Tricky,” and a genre-changing collaboration on Aerosmith’s “Walk This Way.”

Jay’s murder had remained a cold case for years, leaving investigators and fans yearning for answers.

Despite authorities offering substantial rewards, witnesses remained reluctant to come forward, exacerbating the difficulties faced by law enforcement in solving the case.

With the inclusion of Jay Bryant as the third charged individual in the high-profile murder case, authorities believe there is renewed hope that Jay’s loved ones and friends will finally receive justice.

This article was originally published by NNPA Newswire.