Solomon Sobande, XXXTentacion’s manager, confirmed the rapper’s death in a touching statement that said X had “touched the lives of millions around the globe.” The full statement read, “Jahseh Onfroy- known worldwide as XXXTentacion- tragically passed away from a gunshot wound in Deerfield, Florida. It is with great sadness that the news is confirmed in this official statement by his team- manager Solomon Sobande, EMPIRE, Bob Celestin, Es. and AKW PR. In deference to his family, friends and loved ones and in light of further investigations, we ask their privacy be respected at this time. XXXTentacion touched the lives of millions around the globe and will forever reside the hearts of countless fans who listened to his music, attended his concerts, and felt the glow of his uncontainable, undeniable, and unique spirit. News about memorial services to be issued forthcoming.”
XXXTentacion was shot dead in Deerfield Beach, Florida, on June 18. Authorities believe that he was the victim of a robbery. The Broward County Sheriff’s Department is offering a reward of $3,000 for information that leads to an arrest in the case.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. Sobandee Has a Pending Criminal Case in Which He’s Accused of Selling Fake Credit Cards
Online records show that Sobande is facing criminal charges of trafficking in counterfeit credit cards. Sobande was charged in Broward County, the same county where XXXTentacion was shot dead. Pitchfork reported in September 2017 that Sobande was also being represented by XXXTentacion’s lawyer David Bogenschutz. The same article notes that Sobande has pleaded not guilty in the case.
2. While a Student at the University of Hartford, Sobande Was Accused of a Prank that Caused a Lockdown at the School
In November 2009, Sobande was a student at the University of Hartford in Connecticut. The Hartford Courant reported at the time that Sobande, along with three other students, were accused of staging a mugging in April of that year. The four allegedly held two other students at gunpoint as part of a prank. The incident led to a lockdown at the school and the presence of SWAT officers on campus. The four avoided jail time after pleading guilty to criminal trespass, criminal mischief and interfering with police. The judge in the case said that he didn’t understand how pretending to mug someone at gunpoint qualified as a prank.
According to his LinkedIn page, Sobande graduated from the University of Hartford in 2012 with a degree in marketing as well as being prelaw. That same profile says that Sobande has worked for RCA and Columbia Records. In 2010, Sobande set up Sounds Music Group in New York City.
3. Sobande First Met XXXTentacion While the Rapper Was in Jail
Sobande told Billboard Magazine in October 2017 that XXXTentacion was “just a young kid that was lost and needed a chance in life. So much stuff around him touched my heart. I just came to the point like, “I gotta help this kid.” Sobande said that he first began working with the rapper in late 2016.
In a separate interview with the Los Angeles Times, Sobande said that the first time he met XXXTentacion, the rapper was in custody at the Turner Guilford Correctional Center in Miami. Sobande said, “I looked at him and I’m seeing someone who literally got dealt a bad hand in life… Knowing he had all this potential, I was sad for this kid. He’s got his own issues, but it’s safe to say he didn’t get the fairest hand.” At that time, XXXTentacion was being accused of witness tampering and harassment.
4. Sobande’s Lack of a Comment on XXXTentacion’s Shooting Helped Lead to Allegations of a Death Hoax
As the shocking news of XXXTentacion’s death spread, some on social media began immediately disbelieving the news. Some thought that the shooting was hoax because the rapper is releasing an album titled, “No Pulse.” One Twitter user wrote that one of the reasons she was sure the rapper was not dead was because Solomon Solande had not confirmed it. Solande confirmed the death on June 19, nearly 24 hours previously, XXXTentacion’s death was confirmed by the Broward County Sheriff’s Department.
The other reasons given by @HostileKiba was that “there was no blood” on XXXTentacion’s chest and that “the tree tattoo on his forehead is missing in the videos of his “death.”
5. Sobande Says, ‘Protect Me From My Friends For I Can Take Care of My Enemies’
On his Facebook page, Sobande says, “Father Protect Me From My Friends For I Can Take Care of My Enemies.” Sobande also says on that page that he is from Elmont, New York.