DJ Jam Master Jay, 37, of Run DMC murdered in Queens

By Alex A. Alonso (
October 30, 2002

jay10New York – October 30, 2002 – 10:53 p.m. – One of the most respected and talented DJs in the history of hip-hop was gunned down in the lobby of a music studio in Jamaica, Queens in New York. Jam Master Jay, the third member of Run DMC, was shot in the head once while a second victim, identified as 25-year-old Urieco Rincon, was shot in the leg and taken to Mary Immaculate Hospital.

Jason Mizell, 37 (January 21, 1965 – October 30, 2002), and Run DMC were the first rap group to go platinum, the first to appear on MTV, and the first to appear on the cover of Rolling Stone Magazine. Run DMC’s 1983 single ‘It’s Like That,’ specifically the DJ work by Mizell, marked the birth of modern hip-hop, with his turntable scratching skills and sounds he created.

Detective Robert Price, a NYPD spokesman said that the shooter was not apprehended and that the motive was not known. Mizell is not the first hip-hop artist to be killed, nor the first DJ to be gunned down tragically. On Aug. 26, 1987, Scott Sterling a.k.a Scott La Rock was murdered while trying to squash an argument. Sterling was the premiere DJ of Boogie Down Productions that featured lead rapper KRS-1. The Sterling murder marked one of the first murders in the hip-hop community and unfortunately violence and murder has continued to plague hip hop. It is certainly tragic for a positive figure such as Mizell to be victim to this senseless cycle of violence, when he was one that sincerely advocated against the endless bloodbath that seems to follow some of the most elite members of the hip-hop community. He was not connected to the gangster rap culture and did not get caught up public scandals, but he was an innovator that continued to make his mark on hip-hop in a career that spanned 20 years.

Other prominent members of the hip-hop community that have been murdered include: Jake “Jai Hassan-Jamal” Robles (1995) friend and body guard of Suge Knight was murder in Atlanta by a Bad Boy associate, Randy “Stretch” Walker (1995) of the Live Squad and former friend of Tupac Shakur was murdered execution style in Jamaica Queens New York, exactly one year after Shakur was shot five times in New York, Oakland based rapper Seagram Miller was shot to death (1996), Tupac Shakur (1996) was shot in Las Vegas by Orlando Anderson who was later killed in 1998 in Compton, Yafeu “Kadafi” Fula (1996) of the Outlaws was killed in a housing projects in New Jersey and was one of the very few eyes that saw the entire Shakur shooting in Las Vegas, California, and Christopher Wallace (1997) was gunned down by Amir Muhammed a.k.a. Harry Billups in Los Angeles outside the Peterson car museum. Other rappers have been the perpetrators of this violence. Ricky “Slick Rick” Walters served five years in prison for the 1991 attempted muder of his cousin, Rapper Stanley “FLESH BONE” Howse of BONE THUGS-N-HARMONY was sentenced to 11 years in prison for bandishing an AK-47 weapon while on probation for other offences, Jamal “Shine” Barrow, 19, of Brooklyn and member of Puff Daddy’s Bad Boy was sentenced to 10 years for the New Years shooting in New York where Puff Daddy and Jennifer Lopez were present, Capone from Capone-N-Noreaga served 27 months for gun possession, and Corey “C-Murder” Miller brother of Master P of No Limit was indicted for murder earlier this year.

Mizell is survived by his wife and three children.

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