Once Upon a Time in LA was abruptly ended on Saturday night, thanks to a coordinated murder attempt against Drakeo the Ruler. After reportedly getting stabbed in the neck, the rapper was pronounced dead on Sunday (December 19th) morning.
Please note: The following report on the attack against Drakeo the Ruler has been updated. Earlier, DMN reported on a suspected stabbing against the rapper; Drakeo the Ruler has now been pronounced dead.
Rapper Drakeo the Ruler has now been pronounced dead following a murder attempt at Once Upon a Time in LA. The rapper — whose real name is Darrell Caldwell — was apparently bum-rushed and stabbed backstage by a number of attackers. Officials with the Los Angeles Police Department and Fire Department initially declined to disclose the identity of the victim, though the Los Angeles Times reported that Drakeo was the individual in question.
“The individual was not identified,” the Times reported. “But a person with direct knowledge of the incident told The Times that hip-hop artist Drakeo the Ruler was attacked by a group of people at the music festival and seriously injured.”
The details of the stabbing also weren’t disclosed, though it’s believed that the rapper was stabbed in the neck. It’s unknown if other injuries were also sustained, though Drakeo the Ruler was pronounced dead on Sunday (December 19th) morning.
“I’m saddened by the events that took place last night at the Once Upon a Time in LA festival,” Snoop Dogg posted on Instagram. “My condolences go out to the family and loved ones of Drakeo the Ruler. I’m not with anything negative and as one of the many performers, I was there to spread positive vibes only to my city of LA.
“Last night I was in my dressing room when I was informed about the incident and chose to immediately leave the festival grounds. My prayers go out to everyone affected by tragedy. Please take care, love one another and stay safe y’all. I’M PRAYING FOR PEACE IN HIP HOP.”
The attack prompted a quick shutdown of the Once Upon a Time in LA festival.
“The Once Upon a Time in LA fest is ending early,” festival coordinators announced. “All performances are now over. Please head to the closest exit and head eastbound on MLK.”
A performance by Snoop Dogg, which was already delayed, was quickly called off. Beyond Snoop Dogg, the festival bill was stacked with superstars like 50 Cent, The Isley Brothers, YG, Ice Cube, Three Six Mafia, and Bone Thugs-n-Harmony.
Once Upon a Time in LA was held at the city’s Banc of California Stadium in Exposition Park.
It’s unclear why Drakeo the Ruler was targeted in the attack.
Just last year, Caldwell was acquitted of felony murder charges, though the rapper eventually made a plea deal with Los Angeles County prosecutors over conspiracy charges related to the slaying.
Sadly, the incident is hardly an exception in rap, a genre that has increasingly become a war zone. Rapper beefs routinely end in murder, often terminating careers just as they’re getting started. At this stage, it seems that a week rarely passes without a rapper getting gunned down — or alternatively, suffering a tragic drug overdose.