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A manhunt is underway in Texas after a cousin of Beyoncé was found dead in his home last week.
Martell Derouen, 34, was found shot dead in his San Antonio home on Tuesday. The rapper, who went by the stage name Kardone, tended to downplay the fact that he was cousins with the pop superstar.
“That’s not something he would even mention to people. We’d just have to put it in his bios because we thought it was worthy to put in there, but he doesn’t like stuff like that,” Brian Mitchell, the owner of a studio where Derouen recorded, told KSAT News.
Signed by a Sony Music label in 2019, Derouen was an up-and-comer in the San Antonio rhythm and blues scene, according to the International Business Times. His top single, “Magic,” has over half a million listens on Spotify.
But last week, Derouen went radio silent. He stopped responding to friends and family, and when police conducted a welfare check at his apartment on Tuesday, they found him dead from a gunshot wound, the San Antonio Express-News reports.
Police quickly identified a suspect: A fellow part-time rapper, 21-year-old Sasha Skare, KSAT reports. A warrant is currently out for her arrest.
Skare has been wanted by law enforcement in the past. In December 2019, Austin police offered a $1000 reward for information leading to her arrest after her boyfriend, Andrew Bass, was killed during a botched robbery, according to KSAT.
Skare and Bass had allegedly tried to rob a drug dealer, who was shot in the leg and chest during the altercation, according to coverage at the time by Patch. Skare was arrested two weeks later in Converse, Texas, about an hour from where the incident took place.
She was charged with aggravated robbery with a deadly weapon and was later released on bail, according to WOAI-TV.
As for Derouen’s loved ones, they’re still struggling to grasp what could have motivated someone to kill him.
“It’s like hurting a butterfly,” Mitchell told KSAT.
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