Rapper Silentó, whose hit ‘Watch Me (Whip / Nae Nae)’ was a viral phenomenon in 2015, was arrested and charged with the shooting death of his cousin outside of Atlanta last month, reported authorities.
Silentó, real name Ricky Hawk, was arrested on Monday, police in DeKalb County, Ga., Said in a statement. They said they identified Mr. Hawk, 23, as the suspect in the fatal Jan.21 shooting of Frederick Rooks, 34, in Decatur, Ga., About seven miles northeast of Atlanta.
Officers responded to a report of gunfire in a residential area in the Panthersville section of Decatur in the early hours of Jan.21, according to a police report. Officers arrived to find the victim, later identified as Mr. Rooks, on the street. He had been shot in the face and leg and was bleeding badly, according to the report.
When emergency medical personnel arrived, they pronounced him dead at the scene, according to the report.
Video footage obtained from doorbell cameras at several homes in the area captured at least one gunshot and showed cars fleeing the scene, according to the report.
Mr. Hawk has been charged with one count of murder. Police said in their statement that they were still working to establish the motive for the shooting.
It was not immediately clear whether Mr. Hawk had a lawyer. Its reservation agent did not immediately respond to a request for comment on Tuesday.
The video for “Watch Me (Whip / Nae Nae)” has been viewed nearly 1.8 billion times on YouTube. The song became a sensation largely based on a pair of dance moves: the “whip,” taking a wide stance and forcefully pushing one arm in front of the body, and the “nae nae”, which involves shake from side to side with one hand in the air.
Celebrities like Justin Bieber, Stephen Curry and Matt Damon joined in the dance craze, and even Hillary Clinton gave it a go during an appearance on “The Ellen DeGeneres Show” in 2015.
“Watch Me” reached number three on Billboard’s Hot 100 chart. Mr. Hawk’s debut album, “Fresh Outta High School,” was released in 2018, and he has since released a number of singles.
Mr. Hawk has been in trouble with the police in the past. In October 2020, he was arrested in DeKalb County for reckless driving and exceeding the speed limit, according to jail records. The Atlanta Journal Constitution reported that police caught him driving over 140 miles per hour on Interstate 85. In August 2020, he was arrested for domestic violence and assault in Los Angeles and the United States. Orange County, Calif., according to KABC-TV.