Today in Hip-Hop: R.I.P. Lil JoJo (April 6, 1994 – September 4, 2012)
On this day, Sept. 4 in hip-hop history ...
2012: Eighteen-year-old rapper Joseph "Lil JoJo" Coleman was shot and killed as he was riding his bicycle around Chicago's Englewood neighborhood, taken down by the very street forces he so often rapped about. In the days and months that followed the rapper's untimely death, Chicago police began speculating that JoJo was killed by members of 300, a faction of the Black Disciples gang.
Shortly before his death, JoJo released “3hunna K," a scathing diss track directed at Lil Reese, Chief Keef and everyone else involved with 300. Chief Keef is said to represent that crew, which has been said to be the rival of the Brick Squad. Brick Squad is said to be a chapter of the Gangster Disciples. Chicago investigators claimed that JoJo was linked to the former group.
The hip-hop community responded with a mixture of grief and humor that felt out of place considering the nature of the tragedy. Someone posting from Keef's Twitter account mocked Jojo's murder, and as a result, police began looking into the possibility of the "I Don't Like" rapper being involved in the killing. Months later, rapper Lil Durk seemingly poked fun at JoJo's demise on his track, "Dis Ain't What U Want." Durk has also been linked to 300.
A few months after JoJo's death, 18-year-old Joshua “JayLoud” Davis was also shot and killed in Chicago. At the time, his family claimed that he was killed for wearing a Lil JoJo hoodie. Although the Chicago authorities said that Davis' clothing wasn't a factor in his death, the claim still represents the indelible mark JoJo's tragic death left in the community.
Ultimately, JoJo's killers have never been identified by law enforcement. We might never find out who was responsible for the violent act, but we do know that one person lost their life entirely too soon.
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