An impromptu memorial began late Tuesday night in Los Angeles where thousands gathered on the streets of West Hollywood to express their condolences for the recent murder of rapper XXXTentacion.
In a report published by The Los Angeles Times, apparently, over 1,000 people were in the streets for the event.
The city never gave permission for the memorial to take place, and word of its location spread almost exclusively through social media.
Although the event started off without any notable problems at 8 p.m. local time, it soon took a turn for the worse.
Fireworks are going off and police are shutting down Melrose from Spaulding Ave to Stanley Ave pic.twitter.com/mRR5Ur9Zxv— Eric Diep (@E_Diep) June 20, 2018
Eyewitness accounts showcase entire roads being filled with people, dozens in a mosh pit in the center of the streets, and some even standing on rooftops while others jumped off of them, with cries of “Jump for X” coming from the individuals in the street.
Los Angeles County Sheriff helicopters did a fly-over of the situation and even saw individuals scaling cars and trucks.
Variety reported that police arrived at the scene at 7:20 p.m., but did not begin taking counter-measures to the building chaos until closer to 9 p.m. The Los Angeles Times reported that the entire event was cleared out by 10:15.
At least 300 people have amassed on Melrose Avenue, near Spaulding, to pay tribute to rapper XXXTentacion, who was fatally shot during a robbery in Florida yesterday pic.twitter.com/K8kmxFQVZl— KTLA (@KTLA) June 20, 2018
An LAPD officer told The Times that although they were authorized to use other crowd control measures such as tear gas, they opted to fire warning bean bag shots into the crowd to aid in dispersion.
Although it didn’t cause any true physical harm, one officer was allegedly struck with a rock during the encounter as well.
Aside from all of the chaos, there were reportedly no actual arrests made, and only one individual in the crowd sustained a minor injury with a cut on the head.
XXXTentacion, born Jahseh Onfroy, was murdered and robbed by a gunman in cold blood on Monday.
The shooting occurred directly outside of Riva Motorsports in Pompano Beach by an individual who fled the scene after the apparent robbery, according to the Broward County Sheriff’s Office. Onfroy was taken to a hospital, where he was pronounced dead. He was 20.https://twitter.com/ThorLilBro_/status/1009281993283010560?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw&ref_url=https%3A%2F%2Fpeople.com%2Fmusic%2Fxxxtentacion-memorial-shut-down-police%2F
The rapper’s career has been mired with controversy since allegations of assault were raised against him by his former girlfriend. He was facing over a dozen felony charges at the time of his death.
XXXTentacion’s latest body of work, ? was released only months prior to his untimely death, yet nabbed him a No. 1 album spot and praise from rap superstars the likes of Kendrick Lamar and J. Cole as well as notoriety for his versatility as an artist and resistance to allowing one particular sound define him.