JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – Just two days after celebrating his 18th birthday, a young man with a budding career as a rapper died in a double shooting Thursday night in Jacksonville's Southside Estates neighborhood, heartbroken family members said.
Maurice Hobbs Jr. was shot and killed just before 10 p.m. on Agave Road near Cortez Road, the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office said.
The other victim suffered non-life-threatening injuries and was taken to a hospital. Police said that victim, whose name and age were not released, is cooperating with investigators.
Detectives interviewed several witnesses, including some who said they saw a black car driving away from the scene.
Surrounded by her family just hours after receiving learning of her son's death, Tasha Jervis pleaded for answers and prayed for justice. Hobbs' mother said her son had friends who live in the area of Southside Estates, but he did not have any enemies anywhere.
"He had a huge heart, especially for special-needs children," Jervis said. "He was a very loving boy. He didn't deserve what happened to him. He was a very good kid and anyone who knows anything, I just pray for everyone to come forward."
Jervis said Hobbs' career as a rapper was on the rise and he had just finished working on projects with notable artists.
"He was doing things with Beezy and some other musicians. It was really going places," Jervis said. "And now his life is cut short, and now I don't have my baby anymore."
Chyann Hobbs told News4Jax Friday that her little brother had just met his new nephew.
"When a life is taken, you take a son, a grandson, an uncle and his kids he could've had later down the line," Chyann Hobbs said. "It ruins a lot of the future."
Kienna Hobbs, who is only 15 years old, is also dealing with the tragic loss of her brother.
"He always texted me back, but this time he didn't. I want my brother back," she said. "I keep texting him, hoping he's going to reply, but I know in my heart he can't."
As Chyann Hobbs continues to remain strong for her family, she also sends a message to the community after her brother's death.
"Teenagers, boys, girls, who think they are doing something hanging out with these type of boys, they need to do something with their life and put their guns down and their fists up," Chyann said.
The Sheriff's Office continues to investigate. Anyone with information is asked to call JSO at 904-630-0500 or email JSOCrimeTips@jaxsheriff.org. To remain anonymous, contact Crime Stoppers at 1-866-845-TIPS.
A GoFundMe account has been set up to help the family with Hobbs' funeral expenses.