Jamal Trulove, who enjoyed a brief bout of celebrity as an unsuccessful contestant on the VH1 reality TV show I Love New York 2 in 2007, was found guilty of first-degree murder in San Francisco Superior Court this afternoon.
Trulove, known on the show as "Milliown," had faced the murder charge and one charge of being a felon in possession of a firearm following his arrest for the killing
of 28-year-old San Francisco man Seu Kuka in the Visitacion Valley neighborhood in 2007. Following four days of deliberations, the jury found him guilty on both counts -- as well as a firearm enhancement to the murder charge that means Trulove faces a minimum sentence of 50 years in prison, according to Brian Buckelew, spokesman for District Attorney Kamala Harris.
Buckelew characterized the verdict as an against-the-odds victory for police and prosecutors, since the case rested on no evidence beyond the testimony of a single witness. In Visitacion Valley, as in other city neighborhoods plagued by gang violence, witnesses are notoriously reluctant to testify in murder cases. "Twenty-five people saw it. One person was brave enough to come forward and say what she saw," Buckelew said. "The takeaway is that one person can make a difference."
Trulove was booted from I Love New York 2 during the season's first episode, after he got in a fight with another Lothario vying for the affections of Tiffany "New York" Pollard.
Buckelew said the woman who testified in the murder trial has already been moved out of the city through the DA's witness relocation program. Trulove is scheduled for sentencing on March 19.