Berkeley cops are investigating the death of Zion I rapper Zumbi as a homicide.
The San Francisco Chronicle says he died last week after being hospitalized for COVID-19.
But now, Berkeley police Lt. Melanie Turner says police responded to multiple calls alleging that a patient was involved in a physical altercation with nurses and security officers.
They said when they arrived, “officers started handcuffing the involved person and determined that he needed immediate medical assistance” but that while they tried to save his life, “unfortunately and sadly he was pronounced deceased on the scene.”
The following statement was released following news of the rapper’s death:
“It is with utter disbelief and great sadness that the Gaines family shares the news of the passing of Steve’ Zumbi’ Gaines on Friday, August 13, 2021. Gaines, 49 and the MC of the critically acclaimed Hip Hop group Zion I, passed away at Alta Bates Hospital today in the early morning from unknown causes.”