LOS ANGELES — Police arrested a suspect Tuesday in the fatal shooting of an Atlanta-based rapper in the parking garage of the Beverly Center mall.
This story first appeared in the May 20, 2009 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
The victim, known as Dolla, whose real name is Roderick Anthony Burton 2nd, was shot once in the head about 3:10 p.m. Monday after a dispute in the valet waiting area near the mall’s La Cienega Boulevard entrance, police said. The nature of the dispute was not immediately known.
As frightened shoppers sought cover, witnesses reported seeing at least two people fleeing in a silver Mercedes SUV, latimes.com reported.
Mall entrances and exits were sealed off for more than an hour and the surrounding streets were closed, creating huge traffic backups around the mall. Stores remained open, said Beverly Center general manager Jeff Brown.
Police found the rented SUV on Monday at Los Angeles International Airport. The suspect, Aubrey Louis Berry, 23, of Snellville, Ga., was armed with a loaded 9mm handgun but surrendered without incident, a police spokesman said. Berry was being held on $1 million bail.
The 21-year-old victim, who arrived in Los Angeles from Atlanta on Monday to work on his first album, died at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center. Burton was said to have modeled for Sean Combs’ clothing line, Sean John, before being signed by Jive Records.
The fatal shooting was the first such incident at the Taubman Centers Inc.-owned property and the first violent crime in several years, according to Brown and police. About eight unarmed mall security officers were on duty at the time of the shooting.
The mall has about 160 stores and restaurants from Louis Vuitton, Gucci and H&M to anchors Macy’s and Bloomingdale’s.