The PJ Tatler

Media Missing Gang Ties in Oklahoma Murder

Other than Fox News, which mentioned the possibility that one of the three alleged teen killers is connected to the Crips gang on The Five Wednesday, the mainstream media continue to miss a major angle in the murder of Australian baseball player Chris Lane. CNN headlines a story in which one of the alleged killers’ Twitter feed gets examined, but his Facebook and other social networking activity is overlooked.

One of the Oklahoma teenagers accused of killing 23-year-old Australian baseball player Christopher Lane had previously posted images online showing himself posing with guns and wads of cash.

And three days before what police call the indiscriminate shooting, the suspect, 15-year-old James Edwards Jr., tweeted, “With my n****s when it’s time to start taken life’s.”

Back in April, he tweeted, “90% of white ppl (people) are nasty. #HATE THEM.”

The first tweet cited is not original to Edwards. He is quoting rapper Chief Keef’s rap “I Don’t Like.” We reported on Edwards’ aspirations to follow Chief Keef into rap stardom, and how another rapper’s time in prison may have influenced Edwards’ behavior, on August 20. A deeper examination of Edwards’ and Luna’s social network activity turns up strong evidence that the two were either already members or or were being initiated into the Crips street and drug dealing gang. The only time CNN’s story mentions gangs is when it quotes a story. CNN has done no original reporting on the possibility that the murder is gang-related. It’s also odd that CNN notes the photos of guns and wads of cash, but fails to note this image of Edwards in a light blue bandana. Light blue bandanas are associated with the Crips.


CNN also missed this Edwards tweet, in which he claimed to have exacted revenge for the verdict in the George Zimmerman trial — “woods” is slang for white people.

CBS News noticed Edwards’ “taken lifes” tweet, but did not dig to find out that it’s a quote. CBS says that “it’s not clear who Edwards was referencing in the tweet,” which is incorrect. That line is a direct quote from rapper Chief Keef. The fact that it’s a quote provides evidence that Edwards was not “bored” when he and his associates allegedly shot Chris Lane in the back. They were, at least, imitating their rap heroes. They may have been undergoing an initiation into the Crips gang.

ABC News misses the gang and rap angles entirely. So does NBC, the network that deceptively edited George Zimmerman’s 911 call to inject race into that shooting.

The evidence of gang ties to this murder is hiding in plain sight, in Edwards’ tweets, in his Facebook photos and in his associations and his rap idols.

The media are missing another possibility in their incomplete reporting on Lane’s killing: the possibility that the teens were “polar bear hunting.”

The possibility of gang ties to this murder is crucial, because it speaks to the teens’ motive, and suggests that gangs have become a problem even in small Duncan, OK. It also speaks to the culture in which the boys were raised. Pundits like Kirsten Powers are already denouncing the “gun culture” in this case, when the rap and gang culture appears to be far more relevant.