Las Vegas – A house raided by Las Vegas police this week in connection with the 1996 shooting of Tupac Shakur involved a man long known to investigators, whose nephew has emerged as a suspect.
According to a copy of the warrant obtained by EyeWitness News on Thursday, detectives sought items “related to the murder of Tupac Shakur” from Duane “Kef D” Davis. A self-proclaimed “gangster,” Davis is the uncle of Shakur’s rival Orlando Anderson. Anderson denied any involvement in Shakur’s murder at the time and died two years later in an unrelated gang shooting in Compton, California.
Police reportedly collected several computers, cell phones, hard drives, “documentary documents,” Shakur’s magazine “Vibe,” “purported marijuana,” several 40-caliber rounds, two “picture buckets,” and a copy of Davis’ 2019 revealing memoir, “Compton Street Legend.”
The Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department confirmed Monday it had issued a search warrant in the neighboring city of Henderson. The department did not say whether investigators are likely to be arrested for the first time in the rapper’s murder nearly 27 years ago.
Residents of the small Henderson neighborhood, located at the foot of the city about 20 miles southeast of the Las Vegas Strip, said they saw officers detaining the two outside their home Monday night while investigators searched the single-story property.
“There were cruisers and SWAT vehicles. There were lights on the house,” Don Sanssouci said, watching from the sidewalk as men and women came out of their homes to give orders over loudspeakers, hands behind their heads and slowly walked backwards to the police amid a swirl of blue and red police lights.
The case has been referred to a grand jury in Las Vegas, according to people with direct knowledge of the investigation who are not authorized to speak publicly. The timing and outcome of the proceedings are unknown, and the identities of the two men encountered by police at the home have not been released.
It was not immediately clear if Davis, 60, had a lawyer available to comment, and messages left for Davis and his wife, Paula Clemons, were not returned. According to records, the two got married in Clark County, Nevada in 2005.
News of the search has breathed new life into the long-unsolved murder of Shakur, which has been shrouded in conspiracy theories. No arrests have been made, but the case has been under the spotlight for decades.
“I was one of the only living witnesses to Tupac’s murder, and I know the larger story around why both Tupac and Biggie were killed,” Davis wrote in his memoir, also referring to the 1997 murder of rapper “Biggie Smalls,” also known as “The Notorious B.I.G.”
Shakur’s death came as his fourth solo album, All Eyes On Me, remained on the charts and sold nearly five million copies. A six-time Grammy nominee, Shakur is widely considered one of the most influential and versatile rappers of all time.
On the night of September 7, 1996, Shakur was in a convoy of about 10 cars in a black BMW driven by Death Row Records founder Marion “Shug” Knight. As they waited at a red light a block away from the Las Vegas Strip, a white Cadillac pulled up next to them and shooting erupted. Shakur was shot multiple times and died days later.
The shooting occurred shortly after an evening casino brawl involving Anderson, Shakur and associates.
Las Vegas police have said in the past that the investigation quickly stalled because there were many witnesses, but the witnesses refused to cooperate.
That silence was broken to some degree in 2018 when Davis, who said he was ready to speak publicly after being diagnosed with cancer, admitted he was in the front seat of a Cadillac. In an interview with BET, Anderson said his nephew was one of the two people in the back seat involved in the shooting.
Davis said the shot was fired from the rear of the vehicle, but did not name the shooter, saying “road rules” had to be obeyed.
But Davis said in his memoir that he shared what he knew nearly a decade ago in closed-door meetings with federal and local officials investigating possible links between Shakur’s murder and Biggie’s death.
“They offered to release me for carrying out a ‘criminal enterprise’ and numerous murder charges in pursuit of the truth about Tupac and Biggie’s murder,” Davis, who was 46 at the time, wrote in his book. “They promised to shred the indictment and stop the grand jury if I helped them.”
At the time of their death, Shakur and B.I.G. were largely embroiled in the infamous East Coast/West Coast rivalry that largely defined the hip-hop scene of the mid-1990s. The feud flared up after Shakur was seriously injured in another shooting during a midtown Manhattan hotel lobby robbery.
Shakur has publicly accused BIG and Sean “Diddy” Combs of prior knowledge of the New York shootings, a move that both vehemently denied. It caused a serious rift between the hip-hop community and fans.
Davis wrote in his memoir that he finally decided to tell authorities what he knew about the murders of Shakur and Biggie in 2010 in order to protect himself and 48 of his South Side Compton Crips gang associates from potentially life imprisonment.
“I sang because they promised me I wouldn’t be prosecuted,” said Davis, adding that he thought they were lying about the deal. “But they kept their word, dropped the prosecution and dismantled the whole case. No one went to jail.”
It’s unclear if Davis was at the house when officers dropped onto the premises. A warrant has been issued for his arrest since July 2022, when he failed to appear in court on drug charges, according to Las Vegas court records.
https://abc7chicago.com/tupac-shakur-las-vegas-update-search-for-tupacs-killer/13526991/ Tupac Shakur Investigation: Las Vegas Police Take Laptop, Search Home for Papers in 1996 Rapper Murder Case