Watch CBS News

Rapper 'Young Pappy' Fatally Shot In Uptown

(STMW) – Chicago rapper Young Pappy, who had previously been the intended target in at least two shootings that left bystanders dead, was himself fatally shot early Friday in the Uptown neighborhood, Homicide Watch Chicago is reporting.

Shaquon Thomas, 19, was in the 4800 block of North Kenmore Avenue when gunfire erupted about 1:35 a.m., authorities said. Witnesses reported seeing a black car that may have been associated with the shooting, according to a statement from Ald. Harry Osterman (48th Ward).

The shooting happened across the street from St. Thomas of Canterbury Catholic church.

Paramedics took Thomas to Advocate Illinois Masonic Medical Center, where he was declared dead at 2:04 a.m., authorities said.

Uptown resident Kristin Johnson said it is not unusual to hear gunshots in the neighborhood.

"I heard about 10 gunshots and went to the window to peek out, but I didn't see anything," Johnson said.

Osterman said he has requested "additional security in our area to curb the possibility of retaliatory actions."

Thomas rapped under the moniker Young Pappy. The up-and-coming musician was not signed to a record label, but his song "Killa" has more than 250,000 views on YouTube. Another song, "Fanteo Freestyle," has nearly 225,000 views.

As word of the rapper's death spread, fans, including Cliff Alexander, a standout basketball player at Curie Metropolitan High School and the University of Kansas, took to social media to express their condolences.

The rapper was born on the North Side and makes music because "it puts him in a positive mood," according to his Facebook page.

Authorities listed Thomas' home address as the 6300 block of North Lakewood Avenue, but a resident at the building said he only occasionally stayed there with his father, who recently moved out.

Thomas' family could not be reached for comment.

Thomas himself was no stranger to street violence and run-ins with the law.

In 2013, Thomas was sentenced to one year in prison for felony aggravated unlawful use of a weapon, according to court records. He was given credit for time served.

He also has numerous misdemeanor arrests, mostly recently a May 13 disorderly conduct and possession of cannabis charge, according to court records.

Thomas had twice been the target in shootings that instead killed innocent bystanders William Lewis and Markeyo Carr, according to authorities.

Osterman confirmed that Thomas "had been a target in other gang-related shootings in Edgewater and Rogers Park."

Lewis, 28, was standing in the 1300 block of West Devon Avenue when a gunman walked up and shot him in the back about 3:20 p.m. July 12, authorities said.

Lewis escaped poverty in Guatemala when he was adopted at age 7. Loving parents raised him in Wisconsin, where he found his two passions: photography and the woman who would become his wife.

He attended art school in Milwaukee and moved to Chicago two years ago. Lewis and his wife moved into an apartment in the 4700 block of North Hermitage Avenue just two weeks before his death, according to a friend.

Prosecutors claim 31-year-old Conservative Vice Lord Eric Vaughn spotted a rival gang member, handed 15-year-old Denzel Burke a gun and Burke and 17-year-old Michael Phillips chased their rival through Rogers Park.

Burke fired 10 times, missing the rival but striking Lewis in the back as he stood at a nearby bus stop, prosecutors said.

On Feb. 5, 2014, a masked gunman fatally shot Carr, 17, and wounded three others in a McDonald's parking lot in the 6700 block of North Clark Street.

The victims had been in an argument with another group of people shortly before the masked gunman approached, police said.

A police spokeswoman declined to confirm Thomas' role in the deaths of Lewis and Carr, citing "an open and on-going investigation."

Source: Sun-Times Media Wire © Chicago Sun-Times 2015. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.