In a significant development, Las Vegas police have made an arrest in the long-unsolved case of the 1996 drive-by shooting of rap icon Tupac Shakur. Duane “Keffe D” Davis was apprehended early Friday morning, though the specific charges against him have not been disclosed at this time. Two officials with knowledge of the arrest, who spoke on condition of anonymity, stated that an indictment is expected later on Friday.
Davis has been a person of interest to investigators for many years and has previously admitted his involvement in the Cadillac from which the fatal shots were fired during the September 1996 shooting in Las Vegas. In his 2019 memoir “Compton Street Legend,” Davis revealed details of his role in the incident. He disclosed that in 2010, at the age of 46 and facing drug charges and a potential life sentence, he spoke to federal and local authorities about the case in exchange for certain considerations.
The recent arrest comes two months after Las Vegas police executed a raid at Davis’ wife’s residence in Henderson. The search was related to the murder of Tupac Shakur, and several items were seized during the operation, including computers, a cellphone and hard drive, a Vibe magazine featuring Shakur, ammunition, photographs, and a copy of Davis’ memoir.
Shakur was only 25 years old when he was fatally shot in a drive-by shooting on September 7, 1996. He was riding in a BMW driven by Death Row Records founder Marion “Suge” Knight, waiting at a red light on the Las Vegas Strip, when gunfire erupted from a white Cadillac next to them. Shakur sustained multiple gunshot wounds and passed away a week later.
In a 2018 interview, Davis publicly admitted his presence in the Cadillac during the attack and implicated his nephew, Orlando “Baby Lane” Anderson, as one of the individuals responsible for firing the shots. The shooting occurred following a casino brawl involving Anderson, Shakur, and others earlier that evening. Anderson vehemently denied any involvement and was subsequently killed in a later shooting in Compton, California.
At the time of his death, Tupac Shakur’s album “All Eyez on Me” was still on the charts, with millions of copies sold. His influence and versatility as a rapper have solidified his status as one of the most important figures in the genre’s history. Shakur was embroiled in a feud with fellow rapper Biggie Smalls, also known as the Notorious B.I.G., who was fatally shot in March 1997. Their rivalry epitomized the East Coast-West Coast conflict that defined the hip-hop scene in the mid-1990s.
Greg Kading, a retired detective from the Los Angeles Police Department who extensively investigated both the Shakur and Biggie Smalls cases, expressed his lack of surprise at Davis’ arrest. Kading mentioned that Davis had already provided details about his involvement in the killing in public statements and his memoir, which gave Las Vegas authorities an opportunity to pursue the case. Kading believes Davis may face a first-degree murder charge due to the premeditated nature of the crime.
Of the individuals in the vehicle from which the shots were fired at Tupac Shakur and Suge Knight, Davis is the last surviving member. The others, including Davis’ nephew and two others, have since passed away. Kading described the incident as a coordinated conspiracy and stated that Davis is the final remaining individual tied to the plot.
The arrest of Duane “Keffe D” Davis represents a significant breakthrough in the investigation, which has frustrated both investigators and the public for the past 27 years. This development offers renewed hope for justice regarding the untimely death of Tupac Shakur, whose musical legacy continues to resonate to this day.
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