- The Washington Times - Thursday, December 24, 2015

Daquan Westbrook, a rapper with an extensive arrest record, has been identified as the man killed in an officer-involved shooting at Northlake Mall in Charlotte, North Carolina, on Christmas Eve.

Mr. Westbrook, 18, was a rapper who performed as “Donkey Cartel” and released a mixtape titled “Convicted Felon With a Weapon,” the cover of which shows him in a prison cell wearing an orange jumpsuit and making hand signs.

According to the New York Daily News, one of his songs was called “Can’t Be Touched.”

“Westbrook’s friend at the scene told reporters he was going to be a new father. He had just graduated high school in 2014, according to his Twitter,” the Daily News wrote.

But according to several Charlotte news outlets, Mr. Westbrook had a lengthy history of run-ins with the police, his record including at least 11 arrests since 2013, one of them related to the shooting of a 12-year-old boy.

According to the Charlotte Observer, the most recent arrests were in October and “were related to drugs, larceny and resisting arrest.”

A shoe store manager in the mall told CNN that the gunfight that prompted an off-duty officer to kill the gunman began when a group of people “ganged up” to attack a man.

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police Chief Kerr Putney said at a Thursday evening news conference that while he could not specifically say the shooting was gang-related, the altercation involved two groups with a history of feuding.

“This is not a random act of violence. This is something that happened between two parties that were beefing back and forth,” he said.

The subjects involved all have a history of gun violence, he said.

Chief Putney said Mr. Westbrook was carrying a gun and pointed it at Officer Thomas Ferguson when the off-duty policeman tried to break up the fight, at which several shots were fired. Several guns were found at the scene, Chief Putney said.

The officer then killed Mr. Westbrook. Officer Ferguson has been placed on paid administrative leave, as is routine in officer-involved shootings.

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