Man Shot Dead at Ja Party

Two shot, one dead in shooting at Ja Rule's New York party

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Two as-yet-unidentified men were shot while leaving Ja Rule's holiday party at New York's LQ nightclub early Monday morning. One man, 39, shot in the torso, died hours later; the other, 36, shot in the stomach, is hospitalized and currently in stable condition.

At 3:45 a.m., two friends exited LQ and reached the street corner. Two other men, who had been seen arguing with the victims inside earlier that night, then followed them outside, one opening fire. The gunman has been described as an African-American in his twenties wearing a yellow coat.

The thirty-nine-year-old victim drove himself to the 17th precinct police station to report the shooting, and was taken to a nearby hospital, where he died soon thereafter.

Authorities have retrieved a handgun and shell casings at the scene, and are looking at footage from the club's multiple security cameras. No arrests have been made at this time. Police have yet to speak with the thirty-six-year-old survivor because of his condition.

Over 300 guests were at the LQ party at the time of the shooting, but it is unclear whether Ja Rule himself was among them. This is the second shooting at an event for the rapper this month: at a December 20th after-party for Ja's show at the Peoria Civic Center in Peoria, Illinois, a man threw a drink at the rapper, instigating a widespread brawl which left a fan shot in the hip.

Ja Rule's label, Irv Gotti's the Inc., is still under federal investigation for alleged ties to Queens drug dealer Kenneth "Supreme" McGriff, and authorities are looking into whether the LQ shooting may be drug-related. McGriff's alleged role in eight other murders, including that of Queens rapper E Money Baggs, is also under investigation. Last month, Inc. bookkeeper and Ja's manager were both arrested for allegedly laundering drug money.

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