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Four charged with murder in slaying of rapper Pop Smoke

Rapper Pop Smoke
Four people have been charged with murder in the February killing of Pop Smoke, who died during a robbery in the Hollywood Hills.
(Scott Dudelson/Getty Images)

Two adults and two teenagers were charged with murder on Monday in the shooting death of rapper Pop Smoke inside a Hollywood Hills home earlier this year.

Prosecutors said Corey Walker, 19, and Keandre Rodgers, 18, killed the rapper in the course of a robbery at a multimillion-dollar home on Hercules Drive in February, according to a news release issued by the Los Angeles County district attorney’s office.

A 17-year-old and a 15-year-old defendant were also charged with murder and robbery in juvenile court, according to prosecutors. Their identities were withheld because of their age.

Los Angeles police arrested three adults and two teenagers in connection with the shooting last week. The LAPD initially identified a third adult suspect, Jaquan Murphy, but he has not been charged in Pop Smoke’s death. Capt. Jon Tippet, who heads the LAPD’s Robbery-Homicide Division, said Murphy would face murder and attempted murder charges in an unrelated string of shootings that took place in South L.A. earlier in the year.

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The district attorney’s office did not immediately respond to questions about Murphy. It was not immediately clear if any of the defendants had an attorney.

The rapper, whose legal name is Bashar Barakah Jackson, was staying in the luxury home in February. Shortly before 5 a.m. on Feb. 19, several men broke into the house. Jackson was shot during a confrontation inside the home and died at a local hospital. Police detained several people inside the house the morning of the attack and said at least four had fled the scene.

Several times in recent years, Los Angeles homes being rented by musicians have been the target of home invasions, investigators previously told The Times. Investigators say the rapper may have inadvertently posted an image with the home’s address on social media before he was killed.

Pop Smoke previously was tied to the Crips street gang, according to Tippet, who said last week that the suspects arrested in the shooting had ties to a local street gang.

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Tippet did not identify the gang in question, though prosecutors filed additional charges against Walker and Rogers based on their alleged gang affiliation.

Times Staff Writer Richard Winton contributed to this report.


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