Jam Master Jay, born Jason Mizell, was shot and killed in a recording studio in the Queens neighborhood of Jamaica at the age of 37. The crime remained unsolved for almost 18 years.
The U.S. District Attorney for the Eastern District of New York will hold a press conference at 2:30 p.m. Monday to announce the unveiling of a criminal indictment accusing two men of his murder in a drug trafficking case in Queens.
The men have been identified as Karl Jordan Jr. and Ronald Washington, according to the prosecution’s press office. Jordan Jr. will be arraigned this afternoon by teleconference, and Washington will be arraigned later this week.
In the early 1980s, Jam Master Jay teamed up with Run (Joseph Simmons) and DMC (Darryl McDaniels) to form the hip hop trio Run-DMC. With Jam Master Jay on the decks as DJs, they became the first hip hop group to achieve mainstream popular music success, solidified by the “Walk This Way” rap-rock crossover with Aerosmith in 1986.
“They broke down barriers for future rap acts, crossed the lines between rap and rock, and dispelled old notions of what rap could be,” the Hall of Fame said.
Jam Master Jay was killed shortly after the band released their 2001 album “Crown Royal,” and the band disbanded after his death.
In 2018, the Netflix documentary “ReMastered: Who Killed Jam Master Jay” reexamined the evidence for the murder.