Las Vegas police have arrested a suspect in connection with the 1996 murder of Tupac Shakur. The man was taken into custody early Friday morning in a case that has long been considered cold.
Earlier, Digital Music News pointed to an unexpected search warrant and raid tied to a longtime suspect in Tupac’s 1996 murder. Now, police have arrested Duane “Keffe D” Davis, and indicted him on murder charges with the use of a deadly weapon per details emerging from the Los Angeles Times.
Davis has long admitted that he was inside the white Cadillac that pulled alongside the rapper and unleashed a burst of gunfire that ultimately claimed the rapper’s life — in fact, he’s been bragging about it for years, including in a published book. Davis also voluntarily implicated himself in a recent Netflix documentary, a decision that likely prompted further action on the case.
Exactly why it took 27 years for an arrest to materialize is puzzling, though here we are.
On the fateful day, Tupac Shakur was riding in a BMW driven by Suge Knight, inside a convoy of about ten other cars. Knight owned Shakur’s record label, Death Row Records, and was leading the procession past the MGM Grand Hotel and Caesars Palace on the Las Vegas strip.
When the vehicle was stopped at Flamingo Road and Koval Lane, Shakur was reportedly flirting with women in a nearby car. A gunman inside the Cadillac pointed a semiautomatic pistol at Shakur, emptying the clip. Four bullets hit Shakur and one grazed Suge Knight. Shakur would die of the injuries six days later at age 25. Las Vegas police opened an investigation into the murder, but no arrests were made.
Duane Davis wrote about his activities in the South Side Compton Crips gang in his book, “Compton Street Legend.” In that book, Davis says he was inside the Cadillac that Shakur’s killer fired from, admitting to hiding both the car and the murder weapon after the shooting occurred. Davis says he had the vehicle repaired and repainted before it was returned to the rental car company.
Police in Las Vegas searched Davis’ home in Henderson, Nevada in July 2023 after they received a warrant to seize materials connected to the shooting. Some of the evidence seized from the home included .40-caliber cartridges, computers, photos, and other materials. The warrant also allowed investigators to seize any material that proved Davis’ ties to the South Side Crips gang.
Even though the murder is decades old at this point, the state of Nevada does not have a statute of limitations for prosecuting homocide. There are also provisions that may hold a getaway driver accountable for a death—even if he did not pull the trigger himself.