The Los Angeles Police Department has arrested five people who are believed to be connected to the murder of 20-year-old Pop Smoke.
TMZ reports that the LAPD has taken into custody three adults (Corey Walker, age 19, Keandre D. Rodgers, 18, and Jaquan Murphy, 21) and two juveniles aged 15 and 17. It’s not clear what they are being charged with, but all five are set to be interviewed by the police and booked.
"Early this morning, search and arrest warrants were served in several locations in the city of Los Angeles," stated a spokesperson from the LAPD Media Relations Division. "The warrants were all related to the February 19 murder of Bashar Jackson, also known as Pop Smoke. Robbery-Homicide Division has three adult males and two juvenile males in custody. Once they are questioned and completely booked, we will be able to provide the booking information."
Bail was set at $1 million for the adults. All five arrested parties are thought to belong to a South L.A. gang, though LAPD Capt. Jon Tippet would not specify which. The Associated Press writes that “at least some of them are believed to be linked to the 2019 homicide of an 18-year-old man when a fight escalated into a shooting outside the Rose Bowl in Pasadena.”
Pop Smoke was fatally shot during what, at first, seemed to be a home invasion robbery at a property he was renting in the Hollywood Hills. When cops responded to the call on the early morning of Feb. 19, they discovered one man who was suffering from gunshot wounds. Pop later died at the hospital. An early report from TMZ also alleged that his murder was a “targeted hit,” however, the LAPD refuted those claims.
The Los Angeles Times reports Tippet as saying the assailants didn't know Pop Smoke personally and carried out the crime after the rapper "posted his location on social media." Tippet continued, "that is how they found him."
Authorities said the assailants did not know the rapper personally, “we believe that Pop Smoke posted his location on social media and that is how they found him,” Tippet said.— Richard Winton (@LAcrimes) July 9, 2020
The late rapper’s murder investigation faced numerous delays, first due to unreliable witnesses, and later because of COVID-19, with the police needing to dedicate resources to issues related to the pandemic.
Pop Smoke’s posthumous debut album Shoot for the Stars, Aim for the Moon arrived on July 3 and is currently vying for the No. 1 spot on the Billboard 200. The record boasts appearances from 50 Cent, Roddy Ricch, Quavo, Tyga, Karol G, and more, with a deluxe version forthcoming as well.