Po­lice seek clues in rap­per’s death

Man fled scene af­ter Nipsey Hus­sle shot.

USA TODAY US Edition - - LIFE - Su­san Haas

The Los An­ge­les Po­lice De­part­ment says homi­cide de­tec­tives are look­ing for the man who fled the scene af­ter Sun­day’s fatal shoot­ing of Grammy-nom­i­nated rap­per Nipsey Hus­sle, as well as can­vass­ing for wit­nesses and se­cu­ri­ty­cam­era footage that may pro­vide clues.

The 33-year-old rap­per, whose real name was Er­mias As­ghe­dom, was shot mul­ti­ple times out­side his South Los An­ge­les ap­parel store, The Marathon Cloth­ing, around 3:20 p.m. PDT. Two other men were shot along with him but sur­vived and are in sta­ble con­di­tion, of­fi­cers added.

LAPD Of­fi­cer Mike Lopez told USA TO­DAY that one man fled in a ve­hi­cle.

“LAPD South Bureau Homi­cide is con­duct­ing an in­ves­ti­ga­tion to locate him and any­one else in­volved,” the post read.

In a tweet con­firm­ing the rap­per’s death Sun­day, Mayor Eric Garcetti wrote, “Our hearts are with the loved ones of Nipsey Hus­sle and ev­ery­one touched by this aw­ful tragedy. L.A. is hurt deeply each time a young life is lost to sense­less gun vi­o­lence.”

Garcetti added, “My Cri­sis Re­sponse Team is as­sist­ing the fam­i­lies cop­ing with shock and grief.”

A na­tive of Cren­shaw, Hus­sle said in a 2014 in­ter­view with Vlad TV that he had joined the Rollin 60s Neigh­bor­hood Crips as a teen.

“I grew up in gang cul­ture,” he told The Los An­ge­les Times in 2018. “We dealt with death, with mur­der. It was like liv­ing in a war zone, where peo­ple die on these blocks and ev­ery­body is a lit­tle bit im­mune to it. I guess they call it post-trau­matic stress, when you have peo­ple that have been at war for such a long time. I think L.A. suf­fers from that be­cause it’s not nor­mal yet we em­brace it like it is af­ter a while.”

Shortly be­fore the shoot­ing, the rap­per tweeted, “Hav­ing strong en­e­mies is a bless­ing.”

In the years be­fore his death, Hus­sle was in­vested in tech­nol­ogy and com­mu­nity de­vel­op­ment.

Last year, he cut the rib­bon on a co-work­ing space and STEM cen­ter in his neigh­bor­hood with the goal con­nect­ing it to Silicon Val­ley and in­creas­ing di­ver­sity in those fields.

“In our cul­ture, there’s a nar­ra­tive that says, ‘Fol­low the ath­letes, fol­low the en­ter­tain­ers,’ ” he told The Los An­ge­les Times last year. “And that’s cool, but there should be some­thing that says, ‘Fol­low Elon Musk, fol­low (Mark) Zuckerberg.’ “

Hus­sle also started Marathon Cloth­ing, a “smart store” where vis­i­tors could use an app while shop­ping. He also helped de­velop Des­ti­na­tion Cren­shaw, an open-air mu­seum de­voted cel­e­brat­ing the achieve­ments of black artists.

“The man was in­stru­men­tal in a lot of stuff,” com­mu­nity ac­tivist Ma­lik Spell­man told The Los An­ge­les Times. “Fight­ing gen­tri­fi­ca­tion, try­ing to stop gang vi­o­lence.”

Steve Sobo­roff, pres­i­dent of the Los An­ge­les Po­lice Com­mis­sion, re­vealed on Twit­ter that he and Po­lice Chief Michel Moore had a Mon­day meet­ing sched­uled with Hus­sle and en­ter­tain­ment com­pany Roc Na­tion, “to talk about ways he could help stop gang vi­o­lence and help us help kids. I’m so very sad.”

In his own tweet, Moore added, “Tonight’s homi­cide in South LA rep­re­sents the lat­est loss in a trou­bling surge in vi­o­lence. Since last Sun­day 26 vic­tims have been shot & 10 homi­cides — that’s 36 fam­i­lies left pick­ing up the pieces. We will work aggressive­ly with our com­mu­nity to quell this sense­less loss of life.”

At this year’s Grammy Awards, Hus­sle’s de­but stu­dio al­bum, “Vic­tory Lap,” was nom­i­nated for best rap al­bum.

Hus­sle leaves be­hind a 2year-old son with ac­tress Lauren Lon­don and a daugh­ter from a pre­vi­ous re­la­tion­ship.

Nipsey Hus­sle

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