- The Washington Times - Wednesday, May 25, 2016

A backstage fight at a rap concert Wednesday night in New York’s famed Union Square neighborhood escalated into a shooting that killed one man and wounded three other people.

The attack happened around 10:15 p.m., prior to a scheduled performance by rapper T.I. at Irving Plaza, a ballroom-style music venue in Lower Manhattan, near Broadway and East 14th Street.

New York police told reporters that opening-act rappers Maino and Uncle Murda were onstage when gunfire broke out in the third-floor green room. It was not reported Thursday early morning who was in the green room.

Multiple New York news outlets reported that one person was killed, a 33-year-old man who had not been identified early Thursday morning.

Another male victim in his 30s was shot in the torso and initially described as being in critical condition and expected to die. But William Aubry, chief of Manhattan South Detectives, told a news conference that his condition was unknown.

The other two victims are a 26-year-old woman who took a bullet in her left leg and was taken to Bellevue Hospital and a fourth person who left the scene for a hospital at New York University on his own power, WCBS reported.

WPIX, the CW-network affiliate in New York, reported a witness as saying that “no one was searched when they entered @IrvingPlaza.” The 1,000-person capacity club has metal detectors.

There was no immediate word on arrests or possible motive, though Mr. Aubry said police had ballistics evidence and were interviewing witnesses.

Concertgoer Paul Cantor, who was in the back of the club, told the New York Times that he saw a man falling backward from the backstage area like a boxer who took a hard punch.

“There was a body that came across the stage, sort of with flailing arms,” he told the paper, adding that a second fight broke out a few seconds later.

T.I., whose real name is Clifford Harris Jr., was scheduled to go onstage just as the fight broke out.

T.I. is best known for the chart-topping hits “Whatever You Like” and “Live Your Life,” the latter of which features superstar singer Rihanna. The Atlanta-based rapper is also known for his involvement with guns and violence.

According to the New York Daily News, gunfire has broken out around two of his previous concerts, one of which resulted in the death of Philant Johnson, his personal assistant and friend.

He was also sentenced to prison for illegally obtaining obtaining three machine guns and two silencers.

Copyright © 2018 The Washington Times, LLC. Click here for reprint permission.

The Washington Times Comment Policy

The Washington Times welcomes your comments on Spot.im, our third-party provider. Please read our Comment Policy before commenting.


Click to Read More and View Comments

Click to Hide