Zanu Simpson: Untimely death of a beloved Barber, Brother, Friend and Role Model

St James, Jamaica (McKoy’s News) – Zanu Simpson:  Hollis is a residential middle-class neighborhood within the southeastern section of the New York City borough of Queens. This location is where Zanu Simpson, master barber, opened a barber shop “Strickly Skillz” with his brother, Samuel Simpson, who taught him how to cut hair and to do it extremely well.

Simpson was well known and loved, after moving to that community from his native country, Jamaica. He was a barber extraordinaire to athletes and celebrities in Hollis.

On the fateful pre-morn of Tuesday, July 25, 2017, police responded to a 911 call of a man shot near South Conduit and Lansing avenues around 12:15 a.m. Information reaching our newsroom is that Simpson had just left the nearby Breezes Island Grill Restaurant and Lounge, where he had been “chilling” with a female friend. He then left the restaurant, walked to and sat in his white BMW X5. A surveillance tape shows a man in a gray sweatsuit entering the car through the passenger’s side door where the two got into a struggle as the robber tried to grab Simpson’s property. The robber then came out of the vehicle and went around to the driver’s window. A witness, who was a passing motorist, called 911 to report a man in a charcoal gray sweatsuit punching Simpson through his driver’s side window.

Zanu Simpson Fatally Shot

Shortly afterwards, the suspect, who failed to rob Simpson, shot him three (3) times in his head, then fled in a silver vehicle. The same witness who was the passing motorist, heard when the shots were fired and decided to turn their vehicle around, only to see Simpson slumped over his steering wheel. A gold ring, glasses and cash belonging to Simpson was found lying on the ground near his BMW X5.

At the break of dawn Tuesday morning, a memorial was set up by friends and loved ones, for Zanu Simpson. Everyone who stopped by the memorial made sure they paid tribute to, not only an unbelievable barber, but a great friend and someone who gave back to the kids every summer.

Zanu Simpson also took time out to take photos with kids in his barbershop and explained to them the importance of education. He went to college for two years before going into business with his brother in 2005.  “He was a hard working kid – peaceful, didn’t hurt nobody,” Sam Simpson said.

Simpson described himself as a master barber on social media, and touted more than 15,000 followers on Instagram.   He had celebrity clients, such as Future and Mobb Deep, according to friends and the shop’s Instagram page.

Speculations are that Simpson’s death may be related to lyrics he posted to social media quoted from hip-hop star Meek Mill’s “1942 Flows”. However, detectives working on the case, are looking into whether a dispute at the restaurant led to the shooting, and are still conducting their investigations, as the search for the murderer, who is still on the run, continues.


Contributed by Nichola Panton


Jamaican News Website

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