“Plans hatched in hell do not have angels for witnesses,” Pascale Achille, the lead prosecutor, said in her rebuttal after closing arguments.
The foursome had been planning to commit robberies that day, prosecutors argued, when they happened upon XXXTentacion at the motorcycle shop, where they had hoped to buy a mask. After confirming the musician’s identity inside, the men then waited for him in the parking lot and pulled in front of his car, allowing the two gunmen to attack, their faces covered. A passenger riding with XXXTentacion fled, and a scuffle over the rapper’s Louis Vuitton bag containing the $50,000 ended when Boatwright shot the rapper, prosecutors said.
XXXTentacion, 20, a singer, songwriter and rapper who blended genres and first took off on the streaming platform SoundCloud, was high up on the roller coaster of viral fame when he was killed.
In the 18 months before the shooting, he had gone from a little-known, troubled teenager making music in his bedroom to the top of the Billboard chart thanks to the success of his anarchic breakout single, “Look at Me!,” and a follow-up album, “?,” which debuted at No. 1.
At the same time, he was awaiting trial on charges of battery, false imprisonment and witness tampering stemming from the alleged violent assault of a former girlfriend.
“If I’m going to die or ever be a sacrifice, I want to make sure that my life made at least five million kids happy, or they found some sort of answers or resolve in my life, regardless of the negative around my name, regardless of the bad things people say to me,” the rapper said in a video posted to social media before his death.
Since his killing, XXXTentacion — whose striking visage has been absorbed into modern hip-hop’s iconography — has been the subject of a documentary, “Look at Me,” and been featured on albums by Kanye West and Lil Wayne, in addition to the posthumous music released in his name.