The death of a celebrity and high-end jeweler killed in a hit and run this weekend was ruled a homicide on Tuesday, police said.
Aron Aranbayev, who reportedly goes by Eric, was run over late Sunday night after getting into an argument with another man on 71st Avenue in the Forest Hills area of Queens.
Police said the fight may have been over a parking spot.
Aranbayev, who was hit by a dark Dodge Magnum just before 11:20 p.m., was taken to Jamaica Hospital but died on Monday.
Aranbayev, 40, was one of the founders of Rafaello & Co, a Diamond District jeweler that counted among its clients several celebrities, including Jay Z, Jamie Foxx, Alicia Keys, Ne-Yo, T-Pain, Carmelo Anthony and Drake, according to their website.
“With a heavey heart I write this too you all,” one of the founders, Gabriel Jacobs, wrote on Instagram on Monday. “Today I and we all lost our brother my back bone @rafaello_eric.”
A few hours later he added a photo of a group toasting in celebration: “Celebrating my your brothers wedding … they took my heart from me eric I love you bro I would give all the money in the world to have you back seating shot gun with me again.”
For his part, Aranbayev posted many photos of jewelry and celebrities on his Instagram page. He posed with celebs like Sean Combs, Carmelo Anthony, and Swizz Beatz.
Some famous customers took to their own Instagram pages to express their condolences.
“I would like to send my condolences to @rafaelloandco and his entire family,” Swizz Beatz wrote. “This loss is super sad! Eric was the good guy everyone loved. RIP.”
Rapper Rick Ross wrote: “I Remember when u shot hoops wit us in Louie loafers in My City, we loved u 4 it. Now you’ve moved on to Greater place and May u 4eva Rest in Paradise my Goodfriend.”
No arrests have been made.