Los Angeles police said they had arrested the man suspected of murdering rapper Nipsey Hussle, ending a two-day manhunt following the Grammy-nominated artist's shocking death. The LAPD on Tuesday, April 3 said the suspect, Eric Holder, was in police custody in connection with the fatal shooting, which authorities say was not gang-related.
Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, who had blamed "senseless gun violence" for the death of 33-year-old Hussle, voiced hope for "justice that Nipsey's family and community deserve" as the arrest was announced.
The killing in broad daylight triggered an outpouring of grief in LA and among Hussle's superstar peers, who hailed both his musical talents and tireless community organising.
Earlier on Tuesday, April 3 LA police chief Michel Moore said 29-year-old Holder had verbally sparred with Hussle in front of the rapper's clothing store in south Los Angeles on Sunday.
"Holder walked up on multiple occasions and engaged in conversations" with Hussle, the police chief told journalists.
The suspect then "came back armed with a handgun" and fired several times at close range, hitting Hussle in the head and body. Two other men who were standing next to Hussle were also wounded. Moore said the shooting did not appear to be linked to any gang rivalry or feud.
"We believe this to be a dispute between Mr Hussle and Mr Holder," Moore said. "I'm not going to go into the conversations, but it appears to be a personal matter between the two of them."
A massive manhunt was launched after the shooting with police asking for the public's help in locating Holder and his getaway car driven by a woman. The Los Angeles Times reported that the unidentified woman had surrendered to police on Tuesday and Holder was subsequently arrested.
Both Moore and Garcetti lamented a recent uptick in violence in South Los Angeles, with the police chief saying: "Nipsey Hussle represents the enormity of the lives we have lost." Authorities urged the community to come together and avoid any further violence.
"We have a reason to feel hopeful, even in the moments of our most extreme pain," Garcetti said. "And that's by turning to each other.
Hussle, born Ermias Asghedom, has been praised by officials in Los Angeles and by his peers for transforming himself from being a gang member to a successful rapper and community organizer who fought for the black and Latino residents of Hyde Park, the South LA neighborhood where he grew up.
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