As one of the biggest unsolved mysteries of the century, people are always asking: who killed Tupac?

Regarded as one of the greatest rappers of his time, Tupac Shakur made a name for himself with hits like “California Love,” “All Eyez on Me,” “Changes,” and “I Ain’t Mad at Cha.” He signed to Suge Knight’s Death Row Records and the record label owner was in the car during Tupac’s murder. The rapper was shot multiple times after a Mike Tyson boxing match in Las Vegas on September 7, 1996. Since his death, no arrests have been made in connection to the case. The police department has cited a lack of cooperation from people close to Shakur as a reason for the stalled investigation.


Who Killed Tupac Shakur? How Did He Die? Cause of Death, Was He Murdered?

At the time, his rivalry with The Notorious B.I.G. pervaded the 1990s rap scene. Both rappers were in the middle of the infamous East Coast-West Coast rivalry and many fights ensued between the Bloods and Crips gangs. Six months after Tupac’s death, The Notorious B.I.G was murdered in a drive-by shooting. The two murders are the most prominent cases in the rap scene and have eerie connections.

So who killed Tupac Shakur? Read all the theories below.

July 18, 2023: Warrant associated with Tupac’s death was served by Las Vegas PD

On July 18, The Las Vegas Police Department announced that they were searching a home in relation to Tupac’s death. “LVMPD can confirm a search warrant was served in Henderson, Nevada on July 17, 2023, as part of the ongoing Tupac Shakur homicide investigation,” Las Vegas police said in a statement. “We will have no further comment at this time.”

2018: Crips member Keffe D confesses involvement in Tupac’s murder

In 2018, Duane “Keffe D” Davis revealed in USA’s Unsolved that he was in the same car as the murderer of Tupac Shakur during his death. Davis was diagnosed with cancer at the time and admitted that some shots “just came from the backseat.” He confessed that he knows the identity of the shooter — whose name he won’t give up due to “street code” — says he made the revelation under immunity from prosecution.

“All the chicks was like ‘Tupac’, and he was like, ‘Hey’, like a celebrity, like he was in a parade,” Davis said in the Unsolved episode. “If he wouldn’t even have been out the window we would have never have seen him.”

Unsolved creator Kyle Long, told The Wrap “Certainly Keffe D and the Southside Crips killed Tupac Shakur. And it is outrageous that Keffe D is not in jail… “In the [Unsolved] finale, when you see why the whole Keffe D thing, how he had immunity and that — long story short, in real life and in the television show, he had immunity to make this confession to the task force.” 

2017: Suge Knight says he knows the alleged killer of Tupac

Suge Knight, Tupac Shakur, Dr DreNitro/Getty Images

In the documentary Tupac Assassination: Battle for Compton, Suge’s attorney Thaddeus Culpepper wrote in a signed affidavit, that “Knight has known for many years that Reggie Wright Jr. and his ex-wife Sharitha were behind the murder of Tupac and attempted murder of Knight.”

“Not only did Knight confirm the events as portrayed in Compton, which portray Knight was the intended target and Shakur as collateral damage, as true, but also goes on to allege that these 1996 events may have been the first in a history of attempts on Knight’s life, culminating in the recent attempted killing of Knight at the 1OAK Club in Los Angeles, where Knight was shot six times,’ a film spokesperson told Music News.

2014: Police Officer reveals Tupac Shakur’s last words

In 2014, a police officer revealed Tupac Shakur’s last words. “He looked at me, and he took a breath to get the words out, and he opened his mouth,” says Chris Carroll, a retired sergeant with the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, in an interview with Vegas Seven. “And then the words came out: ‘F**k you.’”

“And then I saw in his face, in his movements, all of a sudden in the snap of a finger, he changed,” he says. “And he went from struggling to speak, being noncooperative, to an ‘I’m at peace’ type of thing. Just like that… He went from fighting to ‘I can’t do it.’ And when he made that transition, he looked at me, and he’s looking right in my eyes. And that’s when I looked at him and said one more time, ‘Who shot you?’… He looked at me and he took a breath to get the words out, and he opened his mouth, and I thought I was actually going to get some cooperation. And then the words came out: ‘F**k you.’ After that, he started gurgling and slipping out of consciousness.”

2002: Los Angeles Times Publishes Investigative Article “Who Killed Tupac Shakur?”

In 2002, Chuck Philips of the Los Angeles Times published the article “Who Killed Tupac Shakur?” and claimed that Orlando Anderson fired the fatal shots. Las Vegas police discounted Anderson as a suspect and interviewed him only once. Anderson was the one who Tupac attacked earlier in the night. He was later killed in an unrelated gang shooting. The article also alleged that the gun was supplied by New York rapper Notorious B.I.G., who agreed to pay the Crips $1 million for killing Shakur.

1997: Two witnesses come forward saying they know who killed Tupac Shakur

Amid the investigation of Tupac’s death, Malcolm Greenridge (who performed using the stage name E.D.I. Mean)and Frank Alexander, Shakur’s bodyguard were interviewed by the police. They claimed that they knew what the men who were in the car from which the shots were fired look like, they have never been asked to view photos of possible suspects in the case, the Los Angeles Times reported.

March 1997: The Notorious B.I.G. Is Fatally Shot In A Drive-By Shooting

The Notorious B.I.G. was shot in a drive-by shooting in Los Angeles six months after Tupac’s death. A Chevrolet Impala SS pulled up alongside Christopher Wallace’s Suburban after a Vibe afterparty. The driver of the Impala, a black male, rolled down his window, drew a 9 mm blue-steel pistol and fired at the SUV; four bullets hit Wallace. Among those accused of orchestrating the murder is Suge Knight.

September 13, 1997: Tupac Shakur dies from gunshot wounds

Raymond Boyd/Getty ImagesGetty Images

Tupac died of respiratory failure that led to cardiac arrest after the removal of his right lung. Doctors attempted to revive him, but could not stop the hemorrhaging. He was pronounced dead at 4:03 p.m. (PDT).

September 7, 1997: Tupac Shakur is shot in a drive-by shooting.

On September 7, 1997, Tupac was shot while sitting inside a black BMW with Marion “Suge” Knight, head of Death Row Records. Police have said the two were waiting at a red light near the Las Vegas Strip when a white Cadillac pulled up next to them and gunfire erupted. Police and paramedics took Knight and Shakur to the University Medical Center of Southern Nevada.

The two were leaving the Bruce Seldon vs. Mike Tyson boxing at MGM Hotel. Earlier in the night, Shakur attacked Crips member Orlando Anderson with Knight’s entourage.

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