Kelvin Martin (July 24, 1964 – October 24, 1987), also known as 50 Cent, was an American robber who grew up in the Bronx, New York, but later moved to Brooklyn, New York. He is primarily known as the inspiration for the name of the rapper, 50 Cent.
Kelvin Martin was possibly known as ’50 Cent’ due to his reputation of being prepared to rob anyone, regardless of how much money they were carrying at the time. Another story is that it came from an incident when he entered a game of dice with a 50 cent stake and ended up walking away with $500. The nickname may also be an allusion to his physically tiny stature – he weighed only 120 pounds (54 kg) and his height was 5’2″ (157 cm).
He was shot on October 20, 1987 on the stairway of his girlfriend’s project building, dying in Kings County Hospital four days later. Julio “Wemo” Acevedo was convicted of first-degree manslaughter and “served about a decade” in prison for Martin’s killing. Later in 2013, police arrested Acevedo again in a vehicular hit and run accident which killed 3 people in the Williamsburg section of Brooklyn. In April 2015, Acevedo received a prison sentence of 25 years to life for the vehicular killings.
Martin’s life and influence were chronicled in an in-depth, biographical documentary, starting from his upbringing and carrying through past his death. The documentary is called Infamous Times: The Original 50 Cent. Another documentary about him is called, The Original 50 Cent: The True Story of The Legend Who Inspired The Biggest Name In Rap.
Martin is interred in Silver Mount Cemetery