Rapper Travell “G. Dep” Coleman confessed to a nearly two-decade-old cold case murder in 2010 at a New York police precinct to alleviate his guilt. He has received clemency from Governor Kathy Hochul. G. Dep Coleman has spent 13 years of a 15-year-to-life sentence. The commutation by the Democratic governor enables him to pursue parole earlier than initially scheduled for 2025.
Governor Hochul stated, “Through the clemency process, it is my solemn responsibility as governor to recognize the efforts individuals have made to improve their lives and show that redemption is possible.”
During his incarceration, Coleman earned an associate’s degree and actively engaged in violence prevention and sobriety counseling programs. His clemency application received support from the case prosecutor and the sentencing judge.
Attorney Anthony L. Ricco stated that at the time of the confession, G. Dep Coleman “had been haunted” by the 1993 fatal shooting of John Henkel and chose to admit to shooting someone as a teenager during a robbery in East Harlem. The victim, Henkel, was shot three times in the chest outside an apartment complex.
In response to calls for Coleman’s release by prosecutor David Drucker, Robert Henkel, the brother of the deceased, urged Governor Hochul to reject such appeals, deeming it a “farce.” He emphasized a distinction, stating, “It is one thing to seek (clemency) for drug crimes — but not murder.”