LOS ANGELES (CNS and KGTV) - Police searched Tuesday morning for the suspect wanted in connection with the fatal shooting of rapper Nipsey Hussle and police Chief Michel Moore said he had been identified with the community's help.
The suspect was identified as Eric Holder, 29, of Los Angeles, the Los Angeles Police Department said.
At a news conference Tuesday morning at LAPD headquarters, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti called for the community to work together to help solve this crime and other violent crimes -- and to refrain from more 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. We saw that, and we've seen that, since Nipsey was taken from us. That love that is out there -- and I ask everybody who is grieving for him to grieve for the families of those other victims as well whose lives were just as important and just as significant. ...
"The absolute worst way to pay back Nipsey's loss -- somebody we lost at the hands of violence -- is with more violence," Garcetti said.
Los Angeles Police Commission President Steve Soboroff vowed that a meeting that had been planned on Monday with Moore and Hussle to combat gang violence would take place whenever Rock Nation and Hussle's family were prepared to do so.
"The meeting will happen," Soboroff said.
Moore said Holder had gotten into a dispute with the rapper and others before the shooting, and that he left the area, and then came back with a handgun and opened fire. He stressed that the slaying was not an outcome of an uptick in gun violence noted in South L.A.
In a tweet, posted about 30 minutes before he was gunned down, Hussle said, "Having strong enemies is a blessing." It's unclear if the now ominous message posted to Hussle's Twitter account was the result or preceded the initial confrontation with the suspect.
Having strong enemies is a blessing.
— THA GREAT (@NipseyHussle) March 31, 2019
SEEKING THE PUBLIC'S HELP
Moore called upon the public to help police find and apprehend Holder and credited members of the public for helping the LAPD identify the suspect.
"I ask him to surrender," Moore said.
Details of what the dispute was over were not disclosed.
Sources told the Los Angeles Times that detectives believe Holder has gang ties but the motive for the shooting was personal and not gang-related.
Holder was last seen Sunday fleeing the shooting scene in a white, four-door 2016 Chevrolet Cruze with California license plate 7RJD742 driven by an unidentified female, police said.
Holder allegedly walked up to three men, including Hussle, who were standing in front of The Marathon Clothing store in the 3400 block of West Slauson Avenue, near Crenshaw Boulevard in the Hyde Park area of Los Angeles, around 3:20 p.m. Sunday and fired numerous shots at them, striking the victims who fell to the ground, the LAPD said.
Holder then ran southbound through a nearby alley to the waiting Cruze, police said.
Anyone who knows the whereabouts of Holder was asked to call LAPD's South Bureau Homicide detectives at (323) 786-5100 or Crime Stoppers at (800) 222-8477.
Two victims were taken to a hospital and one declined treatment at the scene. Hussle, 33, was pronounced dead at a hospital, authorities said.
Surveillance video from a business across the street obtained by TMZ shows what appears to be a suspect walking to the clothing store, where multiple people were standing outside. The shooting occurs quickly afterward, although it cannot be clearly seen on the video.
At a candlelight vigil for Hussle outside The Marathon Clothing store Monday night, a stampede occurred and a total of 19 people were taken to hospitals. Two victims were in critical condition, two in serious condition and 15 others suffered non-life threatening injuries, according to Margaret Stewart of the Los Angeles Fire Department.
One of the critically injured was hurt in a vehicle versus pedestrian accident and the second suffered a "penetrating, traumatic injury with cause unknown," Stewart said.
There was no evidence of any gunshot wounds and the majority of injuries people suffered were "trample injuries" sustained as the crowd ran from the scene, she said.
It was not immediately clear what prompted the stampede.
According to NBC4, a fight broke out at the vigil and led to a stabbing.
On Tuesday morning, the candles that were left at Hussle's memorial were moved to a different location by city workers.
Hussle transformed himself from a Rollin' 60s Crip to a rap musician and channeled his success into efforts to help other stay out of gangs, according to the Los Angeles Times. He bought shoes for students, re-paved basketball courts and provided jobs and shelter for the homeless, the newspaper reported.
Hussle helped renovate a Mid-City roller rink and redeveloped the strip mall that housed his Marathon Clothing shop where he was fatally wounded.