An ultra-violent rapper appears to have had a strong influence on the suspects in two brutal murders — an Australian baseball player gunned down last week in Oklahoma and a World War II vet beaten to death in Washington state earlier this week.
One of the suspects in Oklahoma quoted rapper Chief Keef on Twitter just days before the murder, posting lyrics from one of the rapper’s most popular songs, “I Don’t Like,” according to the Daily Mail:
With my niggas when it’s time to start taken life’s
— jamesakabug (@JAMESAKABUG) August 13, 2013
The song also talks about “shooting on sight” and is laced with profanity and drugs, Newsbusters reported. The “lyrics” [X-rated warning] are here.
Newsbusters also noted that Kenan Kinard, the unapprehended suspect in the murder of 89-year-old World War II vet Delbert Belton in Spokane, Wash., identifies himself as a fan of Chief Keef’s “music.”
So who is Chief Keef and what is he all about? It’s not for the faint of heart, as Newsbusters’ Tom Blumer reported.
His real name is Keith Cozart, he is from Chicago, Ill., and he just turned 18 on Aug. 15. He “is a big deal in the African-American subculture, and even to a limited extent beyond that,” Blumer wrote.
Cozart has an extensive criminal history, among the more serious charges:
In January 2011, according to DNAinfo Chicago, he was apprehended on charges of heroin manufacture and distribution. He was found delinquent and served time on house arrest.
In December 2011, DNAinfo Chicago reported that the rapper flashed a handgun after being stopped by police for questioning, then ran away. Officers chased Cozart, 16-years-old at the time, who turned around several times and pointed the gun at them. Police officers “discharged their weapons,” but missed.
Upon being caught, Cozart was charged with three counts of aggravated assault with a firearm on a police officer and aggravated unlawful use of a weapon.
On September 5, 2012, police disclosed to the Chicago Sun-Times that Cozart was being investigated for a possible connection in the shooting death of fellow rapper Joseph ‘Lil JoJo’ Coleman.
Fellow rapper Lupe Fiasco said last year he feared the culture rappers like Keef were perpetuating.
“Chief Keef scares me,” Lupe said in an interview with Baltimore’s 92Q. “Not him specifically, but just the culture that he represents… The murder rate in Chicago is skyrocketing and you see who’s doing it and perpetrating it, they all look like Chief Keef.”
Chief Keef responded by threatening Lupe on Twitter, although he later said his account had been hacked:
Lupe fiasco a hoe ass nigga And wen I see him I’ma smack him like da lil bitch he is #300
— AlmightySo (@ChiefKeef) September 5, 2012
Newsbusters also reported that in April, Chief Keef “previewed a song called ‘You’ in which he threatens to murder a woman for not performing a sex act on him.”
This led to a petition drive to “ban Chicago Public Schools from having their DJs play Chief Keef and Lil Reese at any and all school functions,” according to Newsbusters. Why the school system would be playing the music to begin with is an entirely different matter.
In the end, violent rap/hip-hop “music” appears to have been a relevant influence in the senseless acts of violence we have witnessed these past days.
“Remember this when news reports in the coming weeks and months thrash around helplessly for answers to the question ‘Why?’ and treat the question in each instance as some kind of unsolvable mystery,” Blumer wrote.