A “self-proclaimed” Florida rapper has been charged with murder after detectives tied him to a killing using his own lyrics and music video, Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd said Thursday, as he skewered the “stupid” singer at a press conference.
La’Darion Chandler, 19, started “crying like a baby that lost his pacifier” when he got slapped with murder charges for the December slaying of rival gang member John McGhee, 33, Judd said.
At the Thursday press conference, the sheriff repeatedly dumped on Chandler, known as “Bang Bang,” for not only making a song that allegedly implicated himself, but also for his shortcomings as an artist and his decision to shoot McGhee as he was running away.
“He’s not much of a rapper. My rapper expert says he doesn’t sing well. He doesn’t move well. He’s just a terrible rapper,” Judd said. “But, he’s a stupid rapper. He not only makes a rap video about shooting somebody, but he also admits to shooting the guy in the back. ‘I’m a coward rapper, that’s what I am. If you don’t believe me, watch me shoot the guy in the back.’”
Judd said his “rapper expert” is a detective who loves rap music. That detective told him that Chandler is “one of the worst rappers he’s ever listened to in his entire life,” Judd explained.
When he was hit with a first-degree murder charge this week, Judd says Chandler was already in custody in Lakeland, Florida, about halfway between Tampa and Orlando, for a separate non-fatal shooting.
The charge ends a months-long investigation that was complicated by McGhee, who refused to name his shooter while getting treated in the hospital because he wanted to seek revenge himself eventually.
“He wanted to take care of it himself,” Judd said. “He didn’t want that gang member locked up because, if he was locked up, he couldn’t get to him.”
About a month into his hospital stay, McGhee died on Jan. 9 after he refused to take medicine—despite doctors and deputies urging him to take it—needed for him to get better, Judd said. The sheriff added that McGhee would repeatedly lie to detectives or not respond to their questions at all.
“He took to his death the person that shot him,” Judd said.
Judd said detectives believe the Dec. 17 shooting took place after “mean-mugging” and “bad-eying” from the rival gang members turned violent, with Chandler opening fire on McGhee as he ran away.
The sheriff called the ordeal the result of “testosterone overload” before he played a portion of Chandler’s song, which said in part: “Tried to run I hit his back, though I shoot like a Mac.”
Judd said Chandler “was a mess” even before his last arrest, with the 19-year-old having seven prior felony arrests on charges that include fleeing to elude, grand theft, and vehicle burglary. His first arrest was at just 11 years old.
Chandler has had three stints in prison: His first sentence was for one month, his second for two months and, most recently, he spent a year behind bars before getting out late last year, just weeks before he allegedly shot McGhee, Judd said.
The sheriff said Chandler wasn’t permitted to own a gun because of his past convictions, but he frequently posed with weapons in photos posted to social media.
The murder weapon used in McGhee’s shooting hasn’t been found, but Judd promised anyone who hands it over to deputies a $5,000 payout.
Judd said Chandler shot at another man earlier this year but the victim survived. Chandler was arrested for the shooting and, while in custody, was charged with first-degree murder this week for McGhee’s death.
“So look at this kid, he’s 19, he’s going to prison for the rest of his life,” Judd said. “I want all of you cool dudes to think about this while you’re watching your gangster rap, and you’re looking for a stolen gun…this guy thought he was going to be you—or you’re going to be him.”