King Von Shot and Killed at 26
UPDATE (Nov. 10):
On Nov. 10, the Atlanta Police Department confirmed that only two people died in this incident, one being King Von. There is still at least one person in critical condition. The original statement provided by the APD that three people died was incorrect.
UPDATE (Nov. 6):
The Georgia Bureau of Investigation has confirmed the King Von was shot and killed early this morning (Nov. 6).
"The GBI is investigating an OIS involving APD Officers. Six men were shot during a group altercation and officer encounter. Dayvon Bennett, aka King Von, and 2 men have died. Three men are injured," GBI wrote in a tweet.
Additionally, the Atlanta Police Department released this statement:
"It is our understanding Dayvon Bennett, aka King Von was shot and killed during this morning’s shooting and we are seeing rumors being spread indicating he was shot and killed by APD officers. At this time, our investigators believe Mr. Bennett was shot during the initial shootout between the two groups of males, prior to police responding and attempting to stop the shooting. Additionally, Mr. Bennett was not located at the scene, but arrived at a hospital shortly after the shooting, via private vehicle. The investigation into this incident remains open and very active."
On another note, Audible Treats, Von's PR, has offered XXL an official statement on the Chicago rapper's tragic death.
"King Von, a rising rapper known for his visceral storytelling, passed away in Atlanta on November 6th," the statement begins. "Born and raised in Chicago's O'Block neighborhood, Dayvon Bennett emerged from difficult circumstances to become one music's most promising stars. The 26-year-old artist left us just as the world was beginning to grasp the depths of his talents. Last week, Von shared his debut album, Welcome To O'Block, offering a cinematic and vivid account of his origin story, providing an inside perspective on neighborhood life and the trauma wrought by the criminal justice system.
The statement continues, "King Von was a luminary—a natural storyteller, an artist on the verge of superstardom who had so much more to give the world. He overcame myriad unjust circumstances yet remained steadfastly dedicated to giving back to the community that raised him, O’Block. He was a devoted father, a deeply loyal friend, and a man who took care of his people before himself. We are heartbroken for his family, his friends, his team, and his fans. Long live King Von."
Audible Treats has shared the statement given by King Von's label, EMPIRE, as well.
King Von has reportedly been shot and killed in a police officer-involved shooting in Atlanta early this morning. He was 26 years old and is reportedly survived by two children.
Ghazi Shami, the CEO and founder of Empire, the label Von was signed to in addition to Lil Durk's Only The Family label, confirmed the news via Instagram today (Nov. 6). "I woke up to some very horrible news this morning - My heart is heavy. Another young rising star gone too soon. I pray for your family lil bro. May God rest your soul. We were just getting started 😔🖤," he wrote. "We have to find a better way. There is too much senseless violence. This has to stop. God help us. #RipKingVon."
Nima Etminan, the VP of Operations at Empire, confirmed as well, writing, "I despise having to make this post. Heartbroken. You came from nothing and were on your way to having it all. Gone way too soon. This was your big moment, your big week! The album finally dropped and hit #1 on Apple Music! The whole industry has their eyes on you! My condolences to your family, friends and our whole staff. Proud to have been a part of your career Von. Rest In Peace. 💔💔💔."
EMPIRE released this official statement on the death of the rising rapper, who just released his debut album, Welcome to O'Block, on Oct. 30.
"We are devastated by the untimely passing of King Von," the statement reads. "He was a loving father, dedicated member of his community and an amazing talent that just started to scratch the surface of his boundless potential. Von overcame incredibly challenging circumstances as a young man, but never lost sight of what it meant to give back and uplift his community—O'Block. We are fortunate to have witnessed his growth and evolution, but know he had so much more to give to the world. The EMPIRE family offers our condolences to his family, friends, team and fans during this very difficult time."
According to a report from the Atlanta Journal-Constitution on Friday morning, an argument that turned into a fight between two groups of people, reportedly including Von, transpired outside of Monaco Hookah Lounge in a parking lot just after 3 a.m. in Atlanta. The altercation then escalated into an exchange of gunfire leaving two people dead. Five people were shot in total, one is in critical condition and two are stable. The two officers were shot at but not injured. One person was also hit by a vehicle when the crowd scattered following the incident.
The Atlanta Police Department released this statement regarding the shooting.
"On Friday November 6, 2020 at around 3:20am two off-duty Atlanta police officers were working an extra job at Monaco Hookah Lounge 255 Trinity Ave SW. The officers were in uniform and a marked APD vehicle with its blue lights activated for visibility was parked nearby. The officers were outside the lounge when two groups of males started to argue with each other. The argument quickly escalated to gunfire between the two groups. One of the off-duty officers, along with an on-duty Atlanta police officer who was patrolling nearby, confronted the shooters and shots were fired during the encounter.
"Three suspects were located on-scene with gunshot wounds and were transported to the hospital by EMS. Three other suspects left the scene and were taken to the hospital by private vehicles. Two additional suspects were detained on scene. Three of the persons shot in the incident have died as a result of their wounds and three others are being treated in area hospitals. The officers were not injured.
"The Georgia Bureau of Investigation was requested to respond and investigate the officer involved shooting aspect of the incident. Atlanta Police Homicide investigators responded to the scene and are investigating the homicides. Part of the investigations will include determining which individuals were struck by gunfire from the suspects and whether any were struck by gunfire from the officers. Charges are anticipated against the two suspects detained on-scene and additional charges are likely as the investigation continues.
The identities of the parties involved are being withheld pending notification of next of kin. Please keep in mind the above information is preliminary in nature and could change as the investigation progresses or new information comes to light."
In a press conference with Atlanta Police Department Deputy Chief Timothy Peek, he provided an update on the shooting. "There was an incident where two groups of individuals got into a physical altercation," he said. "That physical altercation escalated into an exchange of gunfire with those groups. Two police officers who were working at that particular club, or lounge, noticed the gunfire, noticed the altercation and engaged some of the people involved. There was an exchange of gunfire with police as well."
"At this particular point in time, we have about five individuals who have been shot: two are deceased, one is in critical condition and two are stable at this particular point in time," Peek continued. "Because of the police officer-involved shooting, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation called out to assist with the investigation and ensuring that we are able to get to the bottom of all of the facts and circumstances surrounding this particular shooting. There was one additional person that arrived at the hospital, who was struck by a vehicle."
Atlanta's police chief adds that the APD and the Georgia Bureau of Investigation are working in tandem to uncover details pertaining to the shooting. "We don't really have the information as to what's particularly happened with that, but the investigators will ultimately be able to also look and see if they can pull video and conduct interviews and work alongside the GBI to see if we can figure out all of the happenings surrounding this incident," he said.
Peek also confirmed that the there were two off-duty officers involved in the shooting, who were "working in a uniform capacity" at the venue. He goes on to note that the non-law enforcement parties involved in the incident were aware of the police presence on the scene as one of the officers was sitting in their patrol car with blue siren lights flashing.
No officers are reported to have been shot.
The scene was reportedly "chaotic" and "officers did shoot, but we want to ensure we look at the evidence and be able to prove who did what. That’s why we are dependent on the GBI," according to Peek.
Rumors are also circulating on social media that Quando Rondo's crew was involved in the incident, but there's no truth to those statements right now.
King Von began rapping in late 2017, releasing his first song "Beat Dat Body” with THF Bay Zoo in 2018. That year, he joined Lil Durk's Only The Family label, and subsequently signed with EMPIRE. Von released two mixtapes, Grandson, Vol. 1 (2019) and LeVon James (2020), working with producer Chopsquad DJ closely on the efforts. Just last month, he dropped his debut album, Welcome to O'Block, which has been well received so far. His 2018 song "Crazy Story" contributed to his rise to fame.
Many members of the hip-hop community have been paying tribute to the late rhymer via social media.
Lil Durk, the rapper who helped usher King Von into the rap game, broke his silence on his friend's death. "MY TWIN GONE 😢😢 I LOVE YOU BABY BRO - D ROY !!!!!," he wrote as the caption for a photo of Von on Instagram.
Chopsquad DJ, who worked closely with Von on his music, was heartbroken by the news.
"My heart can’t take this. No bro. Why you. Why bro. Please just FaceTime me bro. Why they had to take you. Ima see you again this shit ain’t over. It’s far from over. We still just getting started. RIP my Bestfriend. The only nigga to listen to me word for word from day 1. We sat on FaceTime for hours making songs together. Every bar had a meaning and every song was a part of our soul. Every moment meant something and to grow wit you made me feel like I was a real producer. I love you bro @kingvonfrmdao," he wrote in an Instagram post.
"No not Cuzo!," Calboy tweeted, including a broken heart emoji.
Asian Doll, his former girlfriend, expressed her sadness upon learning of his death. "I’ll never be the same I just hope you visit me in all my dreams I just wanna sleep so I can picture us again I just wanna close my eyes & never open then again.... Von I’m gone 💔," she tweeted.
YG also wrote, "DAMN. JUS TAP’D IN WIT YOU GANGSTA R I P KING VON."
Chance The Rapper, who is a Chicago native like Von, said, "Wow. This year was so tough. rip von God bless him and his family I can’t believe it."
XXL has reached out to the Atlanta Police Department, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, King Von's team and a rep for Quando Rondo for a statement.
See more of hip-hop's reactions to the tragic news below.
See 19 Rappers Who Were Shot While They Were in the Spotlight