Little Rock, Arkansas has been rocked by violence in the past week and a half, with drive-by shooting after drive-by shooting. In the very early hours of the morning on Saturday, the violence erupted into a nightclub shooting that left at least 25 people shot and three others injured.
Around 2:30 a.m. Central, multiple gunmen opened fire in the club, wounding club-goers in their 20s and 30s. Some victims were as young as 16. Two people remain in critical condition, according to ABC News.
Now a disturbing arrest has been made.
Memphis rapper Ricky Hampton, aka Finese 2Tymes, was performing in the club and expressed condolences to the victims, writing on Facebook, "The violence is not for the club people. We all come with [one] motive at the end of the day. And that's to have fun. Not to be hurt."
But now Hampton and another man, Kentrell Gwynn, have been arrested by the three different agencies — the FBI, U.S. Marshalls, and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Hampton’s arrest on aggravated assault charges was in connection to the shooting. Two handguns and an AK-47 rifle were found inside the vehicle Hampton was in at the time of the arrest, according to AL.com.
It’s a particularly disturbing development because it suggests that the rapper either inadvertently or intentionally brought the street violence into his concert, turning his fans into victims. The recent shootings have rocked the capital city of around 200,000.
Little Rock Police Chief Kenton Buckner said, "This does appear to be a continuation of disputes from some of our local groups. You've seen some of the things playing out in our streets that has resulted in drive-by shootings."
Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson added on Saturday, "Little Rock's crime problem appears to be intensifying. Every few days it seems a high-profile shooting dominates the news, culminating with this morning's event. We are still gathering facts, but it is clear that we need to have a comprehensive enforcement strategy in place that helps take the violent threats off the streets. The state will participate and bring assets to the table to support local law enforcement efforts."
Please pray for Little Rock!