EDGEWATER, N.J. — Rapper and hip hop artist Lil Tjay was among two people who were shot early Wednesday in Edgewater, according to TMZ, family and friends.
Local police responded to reports of a shooting on The Promenade near City Place just before 12:10 a.m., authorities said. Officers discovered a 22-year-old victim with multiple gunshot wounds at the location, a short distance from the Hudson River, officials said.
Authorities also responded to an Exxon gas station and 7-11 market on River Road, less than a mile north of the Promenade scene. There, they found another 22-year-old victim with a gunshot wound.
Family members and friends told PIX11 News that the person suffering from multiple gunshot wounds was Lil Tjay, a recording artist with tens of millions of streams of his songs, and well over a million followers on social media.
Buggzee Lix, a New Jersey-based rapper, is part of a hip hop artists’ collective that was in contact with Lil Tjay’s family and entourage since the early morning hours.
“We’ve done a few shows together, in the city,” said Lix, whose real name is Eddie Laners III. “I was floored,” he said about learning about the shooting.
He also said that people close to Tjay, whose real name is Tione Jayden Merritt, had been released from emergency surgery mid-afternoon
The Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office, which is leading the investigation into the incident, confirmed that one victim’s condition has been upgraded from critical to stable. Investigators also said that the other victim had non-life-threatening injuries.
The prosecutor’s office said the shooting in which Lil Tjay was injured was “not a random act” of violence. The shootings are being investigated by the Edgewater Police Department and the Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office. None would comment about a possible motive in the ongoing investigation. Authorities had not identified a suspect or motive in the shootings as of Wednesday morning.