Rich Porter - Wikipedia

Rich Porter
Richard Thomas Porter

July 26, 1964
DiedJanuary 3, 1990(1990-01-03) (aged 25)
New York City, U.S.
Cause of deathMurder (gunshot wounds)
Other names
  • Money Rich
  • Rich
  • Richie Rich
OccupationDrug dealer
Criminal statusDeceased
ChildrenDonnell Whiten, Reshonia Porter, and Rhea Porter
Conviction(s)a) 1984 drug possession
b) 1984 weapons possession
Criminal penalty1–year prison sentence

Richard Thomas Porter[1] (July 26, 1964 – January 3, 1990), better known as Rich Porter, was an Afro-American drug kingpin and gangster who rose to prominence in the Harlem neighborhood of New York City during the crack era in the mid–1980s. [2] The 2002 film Paid in Full was based on Rich and his partners Azie Faison and Alpo Martinez.


Born Richard Porter in the Harlem section of New York City, Porter was the oldest of three children born to Velma Porter.[citation needed] Porter began selling drugs at the age of 12, rising through the ranks of the drug trade in Harlem. He became known for his flamboyant and high-profile lifestyle. He was rumored to have never worn the same outfit twice and that he owned over a dozen luxury vehicles that he kept in a garage in Manhattan during the height of his career as a drug dealer.[3]


Rich Porter was murdered on January 3, 1990, and his body was found in the vicinity of Orchard Beach, Bronx the following day. Porter had been shot several times in the head and chest and at the time of his death police found $2,239 in his pocket. Porter's friend and former drug dealing partner Alpo Martinez was charged with the murder and was later convicted.[4]

On December 5, 1989, Porter's 12-year-old brother William Porter was kidnapped in Harlem on his way to school. The kidnappers cut William’s finger off in order to extort $500,000, later lowered to $350,000, in ransom money from Rich. William was eventually killed and his body was found on January 28, 1990, a mile away from where Rich's body was found, less than one month after Rich's murder.[5] William and Rich's maternal uncle Johnny “Apple” Porter was found to be responsible for William’s kidnapping and murder.[6]

In popular culture[edit]

The 2002 film Paid in Full was based on the life and death of Rich, and his involvement in drug dealing along with Azie Faison and Alpo Martinez. His character was portrayed by fellow Harlem native Mekhi Phifer.[citation needed] Richard Porter and the kidnapping and murder of his 12-year-old brother are also the subject of an episode of the FBI Files (Season 03, Episode 18) "The C-11 Squad".


  1. ^ "Police: Boy Killed for Ransom from Drug-Dealing Brother". AP NEWS. Retrieved 2023-04-20.
  2. ^ McKinley, James C. Jr. (January 6, 1990). "Missing Boy: Drug Trade Hits Again". The New York Times.
  3. ^ "Rich, Alpo, and AZ: one of the most infamous New York City drug kingpins". Archived from the original on January 8, 2014.
  4. ^ Lorch, Donatella (January 30, 1990). "Body of a Boy Found in Bags On Bronx Path". The New York Times.
  5. ^ Lorch, Donatella (January 30, 1990). "Body of a Boy Found in Bags On Bronx Path". The New York Times.
  6. ^ "Azie Faison on Rich Porter's Brother Kidnapped, Alpo Killing Rich". YouTube.