In his first interview since the shooting, Squeak shed new light on the man Shawty Redd is alleged to have murdered. “Damon wasn’t the kind of guy that was all for the fame and the ‘shouting out’ and all of that. Cause it was almost obvious what he was doing. And people around seen and knew. Gucci Mane knows Choppo personally. Jeezy knows Choppo personally. They know the relationship of Shawty Redd and the Geto Kingz family. Shawty Redd calls Damon ‘big homie.’ I mean, you don’t call somebody ‘big homie’ if they’re not your big homie.”
Squeak says he met Damon Martin around 1986. “We were like 8 or 9-years-old,” he says. “We were next-door neighbors actually. We grew up in Southfield, Michigan so it was the suburbs, it was a nice neighborhood. We went to Southfield High School. He was really into sports, and was actually a professional speed skater. He was a quarterback football player in high school. He was real popular.”
Squeak says he was the one who inspired Martin to get into the music industry. “I’ve been making music pretty much all my life and I started building my own studio,” says Squeak. “When he heard my stuff, he really gained interest and that’s what really inspired him to try to find a way to get my beats heard. This was maybe ’99 or 2000.” Describing his friend as “a hustler,” Squeak says, “He was selling our CDs and really just trying to get the production part of it off. He was pushing our music.”
According to Squeak, Martin met Shawty Redd in 2004 in an Atlanta strip joint called Club Blaze. He remembers Martin calling him to say he bumped into a producer working on Young Jeezy’s new album. Martin’s goal became introducing his crew, Geto Kingz, to Stewart, who at the time was attempting to cement his own credentials in the music industry. According to Squeak, Martin paid Shawty Redd to make beats for Geto Kingz, and also lavishly supplied the producer with money for other expenses.
“Damon was there for him,” Squeak told VIBE. “Back then, Shawty Redd wasn’t really that financially stable. [So] Damon helped Shawty Redd out a lot. A whole lot. Car payments, house payments…just anything he needed, all the way down to groceries and cigarettes. Even when he got into his car accident [in 2007], my man paid for the Benz to get out the shop. It was times Shawty Redd didn’t have anything and Damon was always there through the years. He told me that him and Shawty ripped a dollar bill in half and Shawty promised that when he got on, he would be there for Damon, because he respected him being there for him. And Damon always kept that half of the dollar bill in his wallet, and Shawty Redd did as well.”