Rapper Pop Smoke was fatally shot Wednesday morning during a home invasion in Hollywood Hills, California, and some are speculating whether his final social media posts identifying his location may have made him a target.
The 20-year-old rising rapper posted a video of himself opening gift bags with tags that displayed the address of the home where he was staying, to his Facebook story Tuesday night — leading some to speculate as to whether or not the killer used the post to scope out his location.
"So Pop smoke put his address up and this morning someone robbed and killed him?" one person tweeted. "This is not normal, that baby didn’t even start life yet!"
The Los Angeles Police Department has not yet confirmed that the victim of the home invasion was Pop Smoke, whose real name was Bashar Jackson. An LAPD spokesperson said at this time it would only be releasing the time, location and briefing of the incident.
Multiple law enforcement sources familiar with the case said police have not determined a motive for the killing. Pop Smoke has been described as a gang member in court documents but it's unclear if this played a part in his killing, the sources said.
Authorities received a call at 4:55 a.m. Wednesday morning from someone on the East Coast who said a friend inside the home had contacted them saying multiple suspects had broken into the home, and one had a handgun, police said.
One person in the home was shot and brought to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead "hours later," according to Capt. Steven Lurie of the LAPD's Hollywood Division.
Public property records connect "The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills" star Teddi Mellencamp, who is musician John Mellencamp's daughter, to the property and who confirmed there was a shooting at the location.
In addition to Tuesday's Facebook story, Pop Smoke's friend, Mike Dee, also posted a picture to Instagram. The post included pictures of the pair outside the house. Because the numbers of the address are visible in the picture, some say the post could have made Pop Smoke more vulnerable to the home invasion.
Many have cautioned against using the social media posts as a way of "victim-blaming."
"Y’all victim blaming Pop Smoke because he.....posted his address??" one user wrote. "These must be the same folks who think black men deserve to be shot/killed for wearing hoodies after dark...or women are asking to be raped because they dress provocatively."
Here i did some twitter police work like you did. Look closely that’s pop smokes account posting a bag that had his address on there. Like i said no one knows what happen. Let the police do their work
"We know where hundreds of celebrities live and they haven’t gotten robbed and murdered the day after," another person tweeted. "Pop Smoke didn’t do s--- to himself."
While authorities do not yet have a comment as to whether Pop Smoke's social media posts could be connected to the home invasion, some are nonetheless interpreting the shooting as a cautionary tale.
"Pop Smoke posted his address on social media and few hours later he was murdered, this shows how careful we gotta be with whatever we share for the world to see," another person tweeted. "Not everyone wants to see you win in life."
Duke of Ibadan @AsiwajuLerry
Pop Smoke posted his address on social media and few hours later he was murdered, this shows how careful we gotta be with whatever we share for the world to see. Not everyone wants to see you win in life
Pop Smoke posted his real address on social media too many times, y’all gotta be careful bc people will be plotting on you the whole time while you showing what you’re blessed for & how great your life is going
Social media has provided an especially complicated consideration for celebrities — who must balance promoting their brand and protecting their safety — in recent years. After Kim Kardashian West was robbed at gunpoint at a rented luxury mansion in Paris in October 2016, she decided not to post on social media in real-time anymore as she said the incident revealed to her that "people really knew" her "every move."
Jackson released his breakout hit "Welcome to the Party" in April 2019. Nicky Minaj remixed the song, which was originally a part of Jackson's debut mixtape, "Meet the Woo."