Detectives believe a robbery and a dispute involving an up-and-coming rapper could have led to a vehicle-to-vehicle shooting that took place Friday night at a gas station in Newhall, ending with a crash on Highway 14.
“Investigations show that a robbery occurred in the same location as the shooting,” Shirley Miller, spokeswoman for the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station, said Monday.
According to detectives, the driver of a Mercedes sedan was the victim of a robbery. He then caught up with the suspect’s vehicle, where the situation apparently escalated and led to the shooting.
The suspect in connection to the robbery is believed to be a Hispanic male driving a gray or silver Chrysler or Dodge pickup truck and is still sought by detectives.
Johnathan Porter, 21, of Los Angeles, was identified as the victim of the robbery, one of the three people detained and the only person charged so far.
He is best known as up-and-coming L.A. rapper Blueface, whose most popular track to date, “DeadLocs,” has garnered nearly 2.5 million plays on SoundCloud.
Porter was booked Friday night at the SCV Sheriff’s Station on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon, according to Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department arrest records. He was released on $50,000 bail by Sunday morning, according to Miller. The rapper took to social media soon after, commenting on his release via video.
Initial reports show that a dispute broke out between two parties at a Chevron gas station on Sierra Highway and Newhall Avenue around 8:30 p.m. Friday, which then led to the occupants of one vehicle shooting at the other party, according to deputies and witnesses on the scene.
Detectives with the Sheriff’s Station said both parties got back into their cars and fled the scene. The incident came to an end when one of the vehicles crashed onto the southbound side of Highway 14, near where it transitions onto Interstate 5.
First responders did not receive any reports of injuries at the site of the crash or shooting.
Deputies at the crash scene recovered a handgun and multiple shell casings from two different locations, according to Lt. Leo Bauer of the SCV Sheriff’s Station.
Miller said the investigation remains active and anyone with information is encouraged to call the SCV Sheriff’s Station at 661-255-1121. To provide information anonymously, call “Crime Stoppers” by dialing 800-222-TIPS (8477) or by using the website lacrimestoppers.org.