Destroyed relatives of the murdered rapper Pop Smoke are in “full investigative mode” trying to find out who shot him in Los Angeles.
Family sources say they have personally interviewed friends and witnesses who were in the $ 2.5 million Hollywood Hills mansion before the shooting and demanded to see security footage, according to TMZ.
The 20-year-old artist, who identified himself as a member of the notorious Crips gang in a song released earlier this month, was shot at around 4.30 a.m. Wednesday.
The murder is now being investigated as a gang-related attack, according to police sources, after it was initially thought it was a failed home invasion theft, because it shared valuable items with hours after Pop Smoke shared several social media messages.
But his relatives, who flew from New York to L.A. as soon as they heard the tragic news, would be stunned by the new focus of the investigation because they didn’t know he had any enemies on the West Coast.
The murder is now being investigated as a gang-related attack, according to police sources, after it was initially thought it was a failed robbery
Doctors see the victim transported to an ambulance who transported him to a hospital, where he was declared dead
Pop Smoke was shot after at least four men with ski masks broke into a house in Hollywood Hills on Wednesday at 4.30 a.m.
The incident was initially seen as a failed theft of a home invasion, because it came up with valuable items hours after Pop Smoke shared several media reports. In the Instagram photo above, which was posted on Tuesday, the rapper is sitting in the driver’s seat of a Range Rover next to his friend Mike Dee, holding a huge pile of money
A source told TMZ that “nothing makes sense” because it is unlikely that a hit man on the east coast will travel all the way to L.A. when the rapper spends so much of his time in New York.
The source said that Smoke was in LA to promote his new album and “relax a little” before he went on tour in March.
TMZ said the rapper’s family “is in full investigation mode and won’t stop until they get some answers.”
Police officers first suspected a failed robbery because of reports in the social media by the rapper with the exact address of the house, allegedly rented from Real Housewives from Beverly Hills star Teddi Mellencamp and her husband.
But the authorities now allegedly consider it a targeted hit based on the property’s surveillance videos and Pop Smoke’s alleged Crips relationship.
Insiders who have seen CCTV images are told TMZ four men are approaching the $ 2.5 million home on Hercules Drive, about ten minutes after people lock in the front door.
One of the suspects apparently walked to the back of the house, where there were no cameras, and came in before several shots were fired.
That suspect, who according to TMZ is supposed to be the shooter, then fled through the front door with nothing in his hands.
He and his alleged accomplices are still on the run from Thursday morning.
The police arrived within a few minutes after a phone call about the gunfire.
The murder of 20-year-old rapper Pop Smoke is being investigated as a gang-related attack, police sources say
LAPD officials say they are still looking for the attackers, who have fled the scene on foot
First aid workers at the Los Angeles fire brigade were filmed while Pop Smoke rolled out of the house on a stretcher.
He was transported by ambulance to the Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in West Hollywood, where he was declared dead.
Detectives interviewed the witnesses in the house and decided that none of them were involved in the shooting.
At a press conference Wednesday morning, LAPD captain Steve Lurie said the authorities were looking for between two and six suspects.
Lurie did not disclose the victim’s name, but several law enforcement sources and the Pop Smoke record label, Republic Records, confirmed that it was the rapper, whose real name is Bashar Barakah Jackson.
Lurie said that the motive for the shooting was not established and that investigators were not ready to say whether the target was random or not.
However, law enforcement sources told the Los Angeles Times that the attack is considered a gang-related murder because of Pop Smoke’s apparent ties to the Crips.
Pop Smoke shared a video hours before the recording on his Facebook story with the exact address of the house where it took place
Investigators suspect that the attackers are probably gang members, but they have not determined whether the killing was motivated by gang competition, the outlet reported.
“A lot of information is available,” said LAPD Captain Jonathan Tippet. “We still have some work to do.”
Pop Smoke shared three photos of himself outside the house on Instagram the day before he was killed.
Two of the photos show the rapper-dressed rapper posing with Louis Vuitton luggage next to the same white Range Rover that was parked in the driveway when the doctors arrived.
In the third photo, Pop Smoke sits in the driver’s seat of the SUV next to his friend Mike Dee, who holds a huge pile of cash.
The caption read: “RECEIVE DIRECT PASSION – ZIP HIM UP BAG EM – LOUIS V LOUIS V LOUIS V.”
He also shared a video on his Facebook story with expensive gifts he had received.
One of the gift bags clearly contained the address of the house – exciting speculation that the attackers learned by post where they could find him.
The apparent home invasion unfolded around 4.30 a.m. at 2033 Hercules Drive (photo). Allegedly Pop Smoke hired from Real Housewives star Teddi Mellencamp and her husband
Hours before he was killed, Pop Smoke shared three photos of himself outside the house on Instagram. In two of the photos (above), the rapper poses with Louis Vuitton luggage next to the same white Range Rover that was parked in the driveway when the doctors arrived
The property is owned by actor and producer Edwin Arroyave and his wife Teddi Mellencamp, daughter of musician John Mellencamp.
Arroyave owns several homes in the Los Angeles region, and sources say Pop Smoke rented the Hercules Drive through AirBnB.
Teddi Mellencamp, 38, confirmed that a shooting had taken place at one of the couple’s rental homes in an Instagram post.
“We especially want to express our prayers and condolences to the family and loved ones affected by this tragic loss of life,” she wrote in the caption.
“We are not aware of the details that go beyond what we have been told or seen on the news and at the moment we want to refrain from further comments because we want the focus to remain on law enforcement officers who do their work diligently. ”
The house is owned by actor and producer Edwin Arroyave, the husband of Real Housewives or Beverly Hills star Teddi Mellencamp (shown together in February 2019)
Teddi Mellencamp, 38, confirmed that a shooting had taken place at one of the couple’s rental properties in an Instagram post (photo)
Minutes after the news of Pop Smoke’s death, Nicki Minaj posted a photo of him on Instagram and wrote: “The Bible tells us that jealousy is just as cruel as the grave. Unbelievable. Rest in Peace, Pop. ”
The cryptic caption suggests that Pop Smoke might have known the suspects – but law enforcement sources have not said if they think there is a connection.
Various other artists, including Quavo, Chance the Rapper and 50 Cent, also paid tribute to Pop Smoke on social media.
Kylie Jenner, whose friend Travis Scott collaborated with Pop Smoke on the hit track Gatti last year, also shared her heartache on the news on Twitter.
Killing Pop Smoke is one of the many deaths of young rappers in recent years with violence and drug overdoses, including Juice WRLD, Mac Miller, XXX Tentacion, Nipsey Hussle and Lil Peep.
Rapper and podcast host pointed to the previous deaths in a tweet about Pop Smoke and wrote, “Prayers up, again.”
Minutes after the news of the shooting became known, Nicki Minaj posted a photo of Pop Smoke on Instagram and wrote: “The Bible tells us that jealousy is as cruel as the grave. Unbelievable. Rest in Peace, Pop. “The cryptic caption suggests that Pop Smoke might have known the suspects
Quavo also paid tribute to Pop Smoke by sharing photos of them together on Instagram
Rapper 50 Cent tweeted a photo of Pop Smoke in the studio
Chance The Rapper shared his grief about the death of Pop Smoke at such a young age
Kylie Jenner, whose friend Travis Scott collaborated with Pop Smoke last year on the hit track Gatti, also shared her heartache on the news on Twitter
Pop Smoke, from Brooklyn, became famous last summer with the release of his debut mixtape Meet the Woo.
The first single on that album, Welcome to the Party, reached number five on Billboard’s Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles hit list and was remixed by Nicki Minaj.
The rapper released his second mixtape earlier this month, Meet the Woo V.2. The album received rave reviews and reached number seven on the Billboard 200 Albums card.
He would be a rapper on tour in March, with 24 shows in the US and UK. Ten of those shows were sold out within two weeks of the announcement of the tour.
Pop Smoke was also scheduled to perform at the famous Rolling Loud hip hop festival in Miami in May.
His rapid rise to fame was accompanied by various brushes with the law, including a recent arrest for car theft.
He was detained in January at John F Kennedy International Airport in New York City after police claimed he had stolen a black Rolls-Royce Wraith 2019 that he had borrowed for a video clip in California, according to The New York Times.
Researchers said the rapper had transported the $ 375,000 car to New York on the back of a low-loader somewhere between November 5 and December 3.
He then posed with the allegedly stolen car in an Instagram post that has since been removed.
Pop Smoke pleaded not guilty of allegations of transporting a stolen vehicle between states and denied the allegations in a radio interview on February 7.
“Foolishness. I’ll tell you later, “he told Power 105.1 host, Angie Martinez. “But just know … But you know, it’s a cap. We keep it that way. But just know it! Man, look at me man. ”
At a hearing in that case, a federal public prosecutor said the government believed Pop Smoke was a member of the Crips.
The rapper himself made that claim in one of his songs on his second album.
“Everyone knows I’m Crip,” he said Armed N Dangerous.
Last September the Times published one interview with Pop Smoke and noted that he had recently had to wear a single monitor as part of a diversion program associated with a gun load, which was later rejected.
The rapper told the newspaper that he wanted to make music for young people who “have to carry their guns to school because it is not safe, but they still have to make sure they get their diploma because they can be a happy mother. I do it for them. “
In other interviews, he described how he was banned from high school because he brought a firearm to the campus.
Pop Smoke was removed from the line-up for Rolling Loud’s festival in Queens in October after the NYPD sent a letter to organizers expressing concern that he and four other artists posed a risk to public safety because they were “linked to recent violence.” throughout the city ‘.
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