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r.i.p.

Hip-Hop Exec Chris Lighty Has Died

NEW YORK - FEBRUARY 25:  Artist Manager Chris lighty arrives at the Hip-Hop Summit Action Network's Fifth Annual Action Awards at Capitale on February 25, 2008 in New York City.  (Photo by Bryan Bedder/Getty Images)

Chris Lighty, founder of Violator Management and influential hip-hop executive, has died of an apparent suicide, according to reports in the Daily News. Through Violator, Lighty had a shaping hand in the careers of Mariah Carey, Busta Rhymes, 50 Cent, Diddy, Missy Elliot, and Q-Tip, among many others. He was 44.

Photo: Bryan Bedder/Getty Images