Highly respected filmmaker Kevin Epps has always maintained that a 2016 shooting in his home was self-defense, but the DA is challenging his self-defense claims out of the blue, and for mysterious reasons.
It was totally shocking news to the Bay Area film scene when Straight Outta Hunters Point director Kevin Epps, 51, was arrested for murder in 2016, as we’re huge fans of his work, and SFist co-founder Eve Batey even moderated a panel discussion with Epps way back in 2007. Epps had always said that the shooting was self-defense, saying that 45-year-old victim Marcus Polk was a homeless man who’d broken into Epps’ Glen Park home and was making threats. Prosecutors declined to file charges at the time, but something has clearly changed, as NBC Bay Area reports that Epps was arrested again and charged with murder for the same shooting, on Tuesday.
“The district attorney’s office will only say it has a strong new evidence against Epps,” the news station’s staff reports.
According the the Chronicle, Epps is due in San Francisco Superior Court today “to be arraigned on charges of murder, possession of a firearm by a felon and possession of a firearm with the identification numbers removed.”
Epps made a splash with his 2001 documentary Straight Outta Hunters Point, a critically acclaimed profile of how the neighborhood evolved from a predominantly African-American shipyard during World War II to the mean streets of today. He followed it up with 2006’s Rap Dreams, another documentary that featured appearances from Mistah F.A.B., Shock G, and Gavin Newsom, and 2011’s Straight Outta Hunters Point 2.
The Examiner reports the Epps remains held at County Jail without bail.