Tyriece Travon Watson, widely known as Baltimore rapper Lor Scoota, was shot and killed Saturday night in the Lauraville area, police said.
Watson, 23, of the 1900 block of Clifton Avenue, suffered from at least one gunshot wound and was transported to a nearby hospital. Police announced his death at 8:30 p.m.
Police said they responded to the shooting at Harford and Moravia roads shortly before 7 p.m. and that several witnesses had seen Watson driving eastbound on Harford Road when a man wearing a white bandanna stepped into the street and shot him.
Homicide detectives are investigating, police said.
Social media erupted with speculation about his murder hours before the rapper's death was confirmed, making him a trending topic on Twitter in the Baltimore area. Videos from the scene were posted online, and fans took to Instagram, flooding Watson's pictures with "R.I.P"' and sad-faced, crying emojis under the comment section.
Watson was known for his popular single "Bird Flu" with Washington rapper Shy Glizzy, and most recently released the songs "Snapchat" and a remix of "Panda" by rapper Desiigner.
Earlier Saturday Watson had attended Morgan State University's "Touch the People" charity basketball game, an event to promote peace on Baltimore's streets.
Councilman Nick Mosby, who hosted a panel with Watson speaking to Baltimore's youth, tweeted "RIP" to Lor Scoota, including a flier for the charity game at Morgan State.
Hip-hop artist Meek Mill, who reportedly supported Lor Scoota as his career began to take off, posted a photo on Instagram, saying, in part '#restup.' Rapper Yo Gotti took to twitter with an "RIP" message.
NBA player and former Baltimore high school basketball star Will Barton said the rapper's death was "really hitting home."
Maryland grad and former Baltimore Ravens wide receiver Torrey Smith tweeted "One that was focused in stopping the violence smh crazy world man... prayers up."
Howard County native and former NFL player Aaron Maybin tweeted that "Lor scoota's Murder is truly heartbreaking man. After a charity game tho .... Really no words to describe my feelings right now."
T.J. Smith, chief spokesman for the Baltimore Police Department, said the fact that Watson was killed on his way from a peace rally had an "eerie irony that should just absolutely tick us all off." Smith called a Sunday afternoon news conference to ask for tips in the case.
"There are many that are going to scrutinize the lyrics in his songs and some of the activity he might've been involved in in the past, but the reality is he's a victim, and there's a murderer on the street," Smith said. "A lot of young people knew him and looked up to him, and whatever he might've been doing in the past, it appears he was doing some things to change his life and use those experiences to help empower other young people in our city of Baltimore."
Watson is among the latest homicide victims in what Smith called a "revolving door of death" in Baltimore that he said is "leaving too many mothers to bury their children."
Smith repeatedly emphasized how widely circulated he'd seen Watson's death on social media, and he said he hopes the young rapper's fans will help police find his killer.
"It's good that #LorScoota, #Scoota, #PrayforScoota, #BirdFlu and all that is trending on Twitter," he said. "But can we trend on Twitter that the person responsible for his death has been identified and is in custody?"
Anyone with information may call the homicide unit at 410-396-2100 or Metro Crime Stoppers to report tips anonymously at 1-866-7LOCKUP.
Date Posted: Sunday, June 26th, 2016 , Total Page Views: 977
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