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Third Man Charged in Young Dolph’s Murder

Young Dolph attends night three of the STAPLES Center Concert during the 2017 BET Experience

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Third Man Charged in Young Dolph’s Murder

  /  11.11.2022

A third suspect has been charged in connection with Young Dolph’s murder.

Hernandez Govan, 43, was indicted by a grand jury on three charges including first-degree murder, conspiracy to commit first-degree murder, and criminal attempt first-degree murder. The Shelby County District Attorney filed the charges on Nov. 10, according to WMC Action News 5.

Govan is the only suspect charged with conspiracy to commit first-degree murder. The charge is from June 2021, which could indicate that he planned to kill Dolph months before he was shot to death.

Two other suspects–Justin Johnson, 25, and Cornelius Smith, 32–have also been charged in Dolph’s murder. Shelby County District Attorney Steve Mulroy told FOX13 that Govan is the one who solicited the murder, leading Johnson and Smith to shoot the Memphis rapper on Nov. 17, 2021.

Govan has a history of criminal behavior. He has been in and out of jail for the past 26 years for crimes including aggravated assault, drug possession, and more. The day Dolph was murdered, Govan was in jail serving time for a June 2021 aggravated assault.

Another man, Shundale Barnett, who is accused of helping Johnson following Dolph’s murder, has been charged with accessory after the fact. Barnett was arrested in Indiana and released. A warrant for first-degree murder has since been issued for Barnett, though it is unclear if that murder charge is connected to the Dolph case.

It’s been nearly one year since Dolph, born Adolph Robert Thornton Jr., was shot and killed at Makeda’s Homemade Cookies. He was 36.

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