Rappers DaBaby and 42 Dugg are offering to come to the rescue of a Missouri woman who made headlines after she allegedly avenged the death of her younger brother, according to The Associated Press.
On Instagram, 42 Dugg offered to put $20,000 toward the bail of Tityana Coppage, who is accused of shooting and killing 36-year-old Keith Lars on Jan. 13, local news outlet KCTV5 reported.
"I got 20 the 20 thousand if they can get her out on ten percent tell her people get with me," wrote 42 Dugg, whose real name is Dion Hayes.
DaBaby shared the post on his own Instagram story and said he planned to match it.
"@42 dugggg I match u a dub," added DaBaby, whose real name is Jonathan Kirk. Photos of the post were shared on Instagram by hip-hop journalist Akademiks.
Coppage's story drew headlines because she allegedly killed Lars because she told police that her family believed he was behind the killing of her 16-year-old brother Jayson Ugwuh Jr., who was shot at a gas station on Jan. 10, KSHB reported.
Police told Fox4KC that the 21-year-old has been charged with second-degree murder and armed criminal action. Police found Lars dead around noon on Jan. 13 in the back of a gray Toyota, with more than 20 bullet casings from two guns found at the scene.
Coppage allegedly knew where Lars was located, opened fire on him and the two exchanged gunfire before he died. She is being held on $200,000 bail.
It was later revealed by the Jackson County prosecuting attorney that Coppage told detectives that Lars was behind the shooting of Ugwuh Jr. as he and two friends walked home from a BP gas station in Kansas City.
Detectives filed documents in court saying Coppage told them she was dedicated to finding her brother's killer and had somehow figured out the car connected to the teen's death.
Police had video footage of Coppage shooting Lars but she denied intentionally killing Lars, local news outlet KSHB said. She allegedly told officers that she intended to meet Lars and settle their dispute amicably but that Lars began shooting at her first and she only fired in self-defense.
But police searched Coppage's phone and discovered that she allegedly told other family members about killing Lars and even texted Ugwuh Jr. that she had avenged his death. "Sent a [expletive] to my brother I owe em that body," court records show Coppage texted to Ugwuh Jr.'s phone.
Fox4KC noted that Coppage has had to live through the tragedy of gun violence multiple times in her life. The news outlet reported that when she was 16, her 9-year-old brother Jayden Ugwuh and 8-year-old cousin Montell Ross were both killed at the home where they all lived, and the killings have never been solved.
Family members said Ugwuh Jr. was there when the 9-year-old was killed and held the child as he died, forever affecting both him and Coppage.
Mayor of Kansas City Quinton Lucas has spoken out about the killings on Facebook.
"Jayson’s life and all-too-early death shows us that we have to further aid families and close relations to victims of violence — and that we’re not doing enough," Lucas wrote.
“Kansas City isn’t unique in having that challenge, but I would hope that we can become unique in finding that solution. We need to actually look at these families that are impacted. We need to invest even more, and victim advocates, we need to invest more and making sure that we’re not seeing that year after year retaliation,” he added in a statement to Fox4KC.
“We also need to make sure that before someone is picking up that firearm to get justice as they see it, they know there’s a different outlet, they know that there’s someone to talk to, there’s someone who cares about the pain that they and their family have experienced. That’s the sort of work that we need to do more of in Kansas City,” Lucas said.
Damon Daniel, the president of a local gun violence advocacy organization Ad Hoc Group Against Crime, said the kind of gun violence that Coppage dealt with is hard to overcome and it stays with someone their entire life.
“When you suffer from a traumatic event, particularly a violent event, it does something to you. It changes you, especially if you were a witness to it. And so, if you’re a witness to a violent crime, you may not immediately notice the changes, but over time, it festers itself. And for everyone it manifests itself differently,” Daniel said.
“We have to come to a place of understanding that there are thousands of Missourians and Kansans and folks in our Kansas City metropolitan area who are suffering from this. This family is not alone. There are so many others that are out here that are crying out every day and whose moms or dads and brothers or sisters are aching with pain because they’ve just not received justice. They don’t have that sense of closure.”