Multiple people have been injured at a vigil for the late rapper Nipsey Hussle, police have confirmed.
Nipsey Hussle – real name Ermias Davidson Asghedom – was shot dead on Sunday (March 31), outside his clothing store in Los Angeles – a shooting which wounded two other people.
Tributes immediately began pouring in for Asghedom who, as well as being hugely respected in the music industry, was a community organiser, being involved with the Destination Crenshaw arts project.
But now, a vigil in the rapper’s memory has turned violent, with a number of people being injured as they attempted to flee the scene.
— Veronica Miracle (@ABC7Veronica) April 2, 2019
Between 300 and 400 people were outside the place where Asghedom was shot, The Marathon Clothing store, last night (April 1), to pay tribute to him when a fight erupted in the crowd, Associated Press reports.
Fire Department spokesperson Margaret Stewart initially said firefighters received a report of a possible shooting or stabbing at the vigil. However, LAPD have since said reports of shots fired ‘do not appear to be accurate’.
As people in the crowd attempted to run away, authorities say many people were trampled and a total of 19 people have since been taken to hospital – two of which are in critical condition.
Our men and women are on scene and making every effort to protect everyone in attendance at the Nipsey Hussle vigil.
Reports of shots fired at the vigil do not appear to be accurate. We do have injured in the chaos and are attempting to restore order.
— LAPD HQ (@LAPDHQ) April 2, 2019
Of those in a critical condition, one person was struck by a car in the chaos while the other suffered a ‘penetrating injury’, Stewart confirmed, although it’s not known whether this person was stabbed or cut by broken glass. Two other injuries were serious and 15 were considered non-life threatening.
Shortly after the vigil, police identified a suspect in the murder of 33-year-old Asghedom, who was pronounced dead on arrival at an LA hospital. According to an LAPD tweet, police are now investigating Eric Holder, 29, for the murder.
Police allege Holder walked up to Asghedom and two other men outside the rapper’s store on West Slauson Blvd before firing multiple shots at them. They say the suspect then ran to an alley and fled the area in a waiting vehicle, driven by an unidentified female.
Investigators asked for the public’s help, stating:
Detectives have worked tirelessly and are now asking for the public’s help in locating the suspect in this case.
The suspect has been identified as 29-year-old Eric Holder of Los Angeles.
Eric Holder is wanted for Homicide in the shooting of Nipsey Hussle. He was last seen in a 2016 white 4 door Chevy Cruze CA license plate 7RJD742. Anyone with information related to his whereabouts or this deadly shooting is urged to contact South Bureau Homicide at 323-786-5100 pic.twitter.com/3pX4fbezDs
— LAPD HQ (@LAPDHQ) April 2, 2019
The shooting is said to be gang related. Tragically, it’s since been confirmed Asghedom had planned to meet with LAPD’s police chief and commissioner on Monday afternoon to discuss a plan to prevent gang violence.
Asghedom is survived by his two children and his partner, Lauren London.
If you have experienced a bereavement and would like to speak with someone in confidence contact Cruse Bereavement Care via their national helpline on 0808 808 1677.