Rapper Lil TJay is undergoing emergency surgery after being shot in the early hours on Wednesday. The incident reportedly took place just after midnight in Edgewater, New Jersey, according to TMZ, though the publication says the extent of his injuries and condition remain unknown at this time.
The shooting escalated to two shooting sites, with one being at an Exxon gas station while the other took place at a Chipotle restaurant, sources reveal. The unidentified victim who was hit at the latter location was said to have been shot several times, while the other person was shot once.
Police are investigating the crime to find out whether one or more suspects were involved in the incident, but a police hunt has already been launched. The motive of the shooting currently remains unknown.
Lil TJay, whose real name is Tione Jayden Merritt, released his debut album, “True 2 Myself,” back in October 2019 after signing his record deal with Colombia the year prior. Since then, he’s landed himself a string of hits since his rise to fame, including “Brothers,” “Leaked,” “Calling My Phone,” and “Zoo York.”
The New Yorker dropped his sophomore record, “Destined 2 Win,” in April 2021, which debuted at No. 5 on the Billboard Hot 200 with sales of 62,000 copies in its first week.
In a previous interview with Complex, Lil TJay reiterated a previous remark he made about how the “street sh*t” felt forced upon him seeing that he actually grew up spending his time at home watching Disney and Nickelodeon.
“I felt like there were no options. I mean, there are definitely options. It’s just that with me, I always wanted more,” he said. “I don’t feel comfortable without certain things. I always want some money in my pocket to do whatever I want.
“Even if it’s something like I want to eat food that costs more than what I got. If I want it, I’m going to get it. I was just using the wrong way to do things, so I had to figure it out. But that was really it: me not having anything, and not knowing how to get it. Then the only way I knew how to get it was illegal. But if it worked one time and I got away with it, I wanted to keep doing it. That’s how I got caught up with what I was doing.”