Philadelphia Rapper PnB Rock Killed After Being Shot ‘Multiple Times’ at L.A. Restaurant
PnB Rock, best known for his groundbreaking take on the trap genre, was fatally shot in Los Angeles while dining at a South L.A. restaurant Monday afternoon.
According to the Los Angeles Police Department, the 30-year-old Philadelphia rapper, real name Rakim Allen, died after being shot “multiple times” at the Roscoe’s Chicken & Waffles location on Manchester Boulevard during the course of a robbery around 1:15 p.m. local time. The rapper was rushed to an area hospital, where he was pronounced dead at 1:59 p.m. As of now, LAPD officials haven’t named a suspect in the shooting — but an eyewitness told Rolling Stone the rapper apparently was targeted for his jewelry.
The witness, a security guard at the property who rendered aid to PnB before paramedics arrived, said the “Selfish” singer visited the restaurant with his girlfriend. A flurry of social media posts noted the girlfriend had shared a geotagged image of her food to Instagram in a since-deleted post.
“The victim was eating at a table when he was approached by one suspect,” LAPD Officer Norma Eisenman told Rolling Stone. She said the “suspect demanded items” from the rapper, brandished a weapon and fired multiple shots. The suspect “removed some items from the victim, entered a waiting vehicle and fled the scene,” she said.
Video showing the aftermath of the incident was shared to Instagram by bystanders. The security guard shown in the graphic clip spoke to Rolling Stone near the scene, his bright blue sneakers stained with blood. He asked to be identified only by the initials G.T. and said he heard about three shots before rushing to the wounded rapper’s side. “I did what anybody, I hope, would do for me,” he said. “I was telling him, ‘Be calm, be calm, get control of your breathing. Don’t trip on what you thought you seen, get control of your breathing.’ And then his breathing declined. It went all the way down. I think he was gone. He was just gone,” G.T. said. “I was probably the last person he saw.”
He said PnB’s girlfriend handed him her phone so he could hear a 911 operator give instructions on how to render first aid. He said the girlfriend was so distraught and “hysterical,” he had to ask others to hold her back. “She was screaming and didn’t know what to do, he said. “The robbery happened fast. They took some items. He had multiple chains on.”
The guard said he couldn’t recall anything about the suspects: “It was a blur. I had my glasses off. God put me in a position to not see shit.”
Reanna Moore was at home a few blocks away when she heard about the shooting via social media and rushed over. She’s a fan, and felt safe approaching the building because police were there already. “It was a lot of blood, like a puddle. I saw blood everywhere,” Moore, 18, tells Rolling Stone. “It’s crazy. I was really hoping he would make it. He was so young.”
“Celebrities come here all the time, but they usually get their food and leave. But he sat and stayed with his girlfriend. And she posted about it. I guess that’s L.A. for you. You can’t trust people,” Moore’s friend Sheldon Thompson, 21, said. (They rushed over to the scene together.) “I’m just shocked. I’m such a big fan. He had a really bright future.”
The rapper signed with Atlantic Records in 2015 after the success of his 2014 Real N*gga Bangaz mixtape, which he wrote while incarcerated. His debut single “Fleek” was a national introduction to the rapper’s unique melodic flow, while his follow-up “Selfish” reached No. 51 on the Billboard Hot 100. Along with his sultry take on the genre, the rapper also used his platform to explore the systemic ills in his native Philadelphia, as evidenced on his introspective 2014 track, “My City Needs Something.” In 2019, PnB collaborated with Ed Sheeran and Chance The Rapper on “Cross Me,” a groovy electropop single off Sheeran’s fourth studio album, No.6 Collaborations Project. Later that year, he joined Nicki Minaj on “Fendi,” a syrupy Murda Beatz-produced single that helped promote Minaj’s Fendi Prints On fashion collection.
Just a week ago, PnB Rock spoke with media personality DJ Akademiks, where he recalled a previous incident that happened “mid-pandemic” during which someone unsuccessfully tried to rob him while visiting L.A. with his girlfriend and daughter. “I don’t be outside,” he said about his L.A. lifestyle, adding, “I’m not going to put myself in those situations ‘cause I know what happens in those situations.”