Digital Underground's Money B Questioned In Shooting Death

Rapper's father denies son's involvement in incident outside LP-release party.

SAN FRANCISCODigital Underground rapper Money B was held for questioning early Thursday morning (April 20) following the shooting death of a 31-year-old man outside a party celebrating the rapper's debut solo album, according to Money B's father, Bobby McCall.

McCall said his son had no involvement in the shooting.

"I was right there," McCall said Thursday afternoon. "[Money B] had nothing to do with it. We were leaving the club, shots were fired, police showed up. Then I see this kid laying on the ground, police with their guns drawn ... I stood out there till 4 a.m. while they were interrogating [Money B], then they put him in the van with his girlfriend ... [Money B] called me ... and said they let him go. ... He has a squeaky-clean record. He's never been accused of anything in his whole life."

Money B, 30, was not charged, and was released Thursday afternoon, McCall said. Police, who said they held several people after the incident, would not confirm that the rapper was questioned about the shooting.

Police say Ronald Blackburn, 31, of San Leandro, Calif., was shot during a fight outside the upscale Glas Kat Supper Club in San Francisco's South of Market district. The incident occurred about 2 a.m. Thursday, following a party and performance by Money B (born Ronald Brooks), in celebration of his solo album, Talking Dirty, released March 28.

Blackburn was shot near a sport-utility vehicle, in which Money B, his girlfriend and one other unidentified woman were waiting to leave, police said. Police would not confirm reports that radio station KCBS-AM said that Blackburn had been banging on the SUV, and that shots were fired from inside the vehicle.

"There was an altercation between two men outside [the club]," said Officer Jim Deignan, San Francisco Police Department spokesperson. "During the altercation, one man shot the other. ... The altercation started further up, then resumed down there [by the SUV]."

Police spokesperson Dewayne Tully said six people were handcuffed, three of whom were taken to jail, then released. The other three were detained at the scene, police added. No suspects remain in police custody.

McCall, a former member of the radical political-action group the Black Panthers, said he had been watching the door of the club at the time of the incident and heard gunshots. He said he saw no one with guns except police.

Security at the show was tight, and audience members had been thoroughly searched before being allowed inside, McCall added.

Glas Kat Supper Club General Manager Steve Lee, 43, said the 400-person, invitation-only party had ended at 1:40 a.m., at least 20 minutes before the shooting.

"The facility didn't know what was going on, because we were closed," Lee said. "Everybody was out of the building already. ... There was a fight, some kind of argument going on outside, and I guess the shooting happened from that. ... All we saw was a bunch of police cars outside."

"It was a Digital Underground party," McCall said. "They don't roll like that. They're not gangsta rappers."

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