Rapper Pop Smoke has died in a home invasion robbery early Wednesday morning, reports TMZ.
The artist, born Bashar Barakah Jackson, was home in his Hollywood Hills property when two men wearing hoodies and masks broke in around 4:30 a.m. The invaders fired multiple shots, striking Pop Smoke, and then fled on foot. The “Dior” rapper was taken to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in West Hollywood where he was later pronounced dead.
One man was handcuffed but was later released when officers decided he was not involved in the fatal shooting. The suspects have not been caught or identified. The up-and-coming rapper recently made it to the Billboard charts with his album, Meet The Woo 2 coming in at No. 7. Pop Smoke was 20 years old.
The Brooklyn native gained popularity after his song “Welcome To The Party” became a hit. The video has over 23 million views on Youtube. He told Genius he wrote the song in his room in about 30 minutes.
“I never wrote [down] anything,” he told Rolling Stone. “It’s all up my head. Everything that I be writing, everything that I be saying, when it comes to these types of songs, just be so natural. Just how I be feeling.”
The rapper even found a fan in Nicki Minaj, who remixed the song. He also collaborated with Travis Scott on Jackboys as well as other rappers like Quavo, Lil Tjay, Gunna and more. He had been scheduled to perform at the popular hip-hop music festival Rolling Loud this past October, but NYPD Assistant Chief Martin Morales demanded that festival organizers remove him as well as a few other rappers from the lineup because of “public safety concerns,” according to Rolling Stone.
“The above listed performers have been associated with recent acts of violence citywide,” Morales wrote in the letter. “The New York City Police Department believes if these individuals are allowed to perform, there will be a higher risk of violence.”
Pop Smoke was scheduled to perform at Rolling Loud Miami this upcoming May. He was signed to Republic Records.