Christian Rapper Thi'sl Shot in Attempted Robbery on Washington Avenue

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Christian Rapper Thi'sl Shot in Attempted Robbery on Washington Avenue
St. Louis rapper Thi'sl, a pioneer in Christian hip-hop, was the victim of a shooting early Tuesday morning, according to social media reports.

The rapper, born Travis Tremayne Tyler, 41, was reportedly shot during an attempted robbery early Tuesday morning. Social media postings say that Tyler was leaving Nara Cafe & Hookah Lounge (1326 Washington Avenue) when he was approached by a man who attempted to rob him.

Rapzilla reports that Tyler was shot in the leg, which was broken by the bullet, requiring surgery including a rod and bolts.

St. Louis Police do not release the names of victims unless they are deceased and a next of kin has been notified, but departmental reports show two instances of first-degree assault Tuesday, one in which the victim matches Tyler's description. According to that report, the incident happened near 12:30 a.m. on Tuesday morning at the intersection of Washington Avenue and Fifteenth Street, about a block from Nara Cafe.

The victim told police he was approached by a man who produced a firearm, according to a police summary of the case. The victim then drew his own weapon and there was an exchange of gunfire between the two men. The victim was shot in the leg and transported to a hospital, where he was listed in stable condition. The suspect then allegedly jumped into a vehicle occupied by two other suspects and the group fled the scene.

It is unclear if any of the suspects were struck by gunfire. Police describe them only as three unknown black males.

The Christian Post cites a private Facebook post from a family member saying Tyler is expected to recover.

"Didn't want to post until I knew he was OK and really wrapped my head around everything that happened today," the woman writes. "My fav was shot multiples x's last night and underwent surgery this morning.. He is expected to have a full recovery. We have to pray more for this city and all these senseless acts of violence. I thank God He spared my cuzzns life. Praying for a speedy recovery. I love you cuz Thi'sl Tyler."

Thi'sl is a Billboard-charting hip-hop artist who made an appearance on fellow Christian rapper Lecrae's Grammy-winning album Gravity in 2012. He had previously rapped about the street life he lived as a young man in St. Louis — a life that even led to him being locked up on a suspected murder charge in 1999 before being cleared and released. Following that incident, the rapper turned his life around.

Since that time he's released five full-length albums, and is considered one of the most influential Christian rappers in the country.

About The Author

Daniel Hill

Daniel Hill is editor at large for the Riverfront Times and he demands to be taken seriously, despite all evidence to the contrary. Follow him on Twitter at @rftmusic.
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