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The Mysterious Death Of Tupac Shakur

Who killed Tupac?

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After nearly 20 years, the murder of rapper Tupac Shakur remains unsolved. So, what happened to Tupac and who are the major suspects in his murder? We thought we'd try and find out:

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On Sept. 7, 1996, Tupac Shakur attended a Mike Tyson boxing match at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. Tupac was accompanied by Suge Knight, the CEO of Death Row Records, which was Tupac's label at the time.

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On his way out, Tupac and his bodyguard began fighting with Orlando Anderson, a member of the Compton-based Southside Crips. After the fight broke up, Tupac left the hotel with Suge Knight. They went to Suge Knight's house and then headed to Club 662, but they never made it.

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While they were stopped at a traffic light, a white Cadillac pulled up next to their car and opened fire. The shooter hit Tupac four times and grazed Suge Knight's head. Tupac was taken to a nearby hospital and put on life support. He died six days later on Sept. 13, 1996. He was only 25 years old.

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In 2014, 18 years after the shooting, Chris Carroll, a now-retired Las Vegas Police Department sergeant, came forward to say he was first at the scene. According to Carroll, when he opened the door and asked Tupac who shot him, Tupac responded, "Fuck you," making those his last words before slipping into unconsciousness.

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The LVPD never arrested or charged anyone for the murder and the case currently remains unsolved. They also failed to follow up with Yaki Kadafi, a member of Tupac's entourage who claimed he could ID the killer. And Kadafi can no longer be interviewed, as he was killed two months after the shooting.

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So what are the theories revolving around this mysterious shooting? The first comes from Chuck Philips, a former L.A. Times journalist. Philips believes that Orlando Anderson, the Crips, and Biggie Smalls are responsible for the murder.

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Through his research, Philips came up with three conclusions about Tupac's death. First, members of the Southside Crips orchestrated the shooting as revenge for his fight with Orlando Anderson.

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Second, Philips believes Orlando Anderson was the shooter.

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And finally, Philips found it plausible that Biggie Smalls paid the Crips $1 million to kill Tupac and supplied the gun.

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But why would Biggie want Tupac dead? Well, Biggie's yearlong feud with Tupac was no secret. Biggie repped the East Coast while Tupac repped the West Coast. The two had several reported verbal altercations and also released diss tracks bashing each other. In one song, "Hit ’Em Up", Tupac even went as far as to claim he slept with Biggie's wife.

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However, despite the public feud, Biggie and those connected with him were not questioned about Tupac's death.

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And what about Orlando Anderson, the potential shooter who fought with Tupac at the MGM? Well, Anderson was shot to death in May 1998. Before his death, he denied responsibility and was never charged by the LVPD.

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The second theory comes from Russell Poole, a former LAPD detective. Poole believes that Suge Knight planned the murder, including getting Tupac to Las Vegas that evening.

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So, what motive did Suge have to kill Tupac? Well, it was rumored Suge owed Tupac a lot of money...possibly up to $3 million.

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This is potentially backed up by the fact that Tupac's mom sued Death Row Records in 1997 for mishandling Tupac's money.

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Tupac may have been on his way out from Death Row Records, too. He had just recently fired the lawyer he shared with Suge Knight. Shortly after Tupac fired his lawyer, Suge invited him to the boxing match.

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According to Poole, another potentially incriminating fact for Suge Knight was that instead of immediately leaving with everyone else after the brawl, he stopped and made a phone call. He also insisted Tupac ride in his car.

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Orlando Anderson also provided conflicting testimony as to Suge Knight's involvement in the brawl, first saying that Suge participated, then saying Suge was trying to stop the fight. Some believe Suge paid him off.

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But Chris Carroll, the first officer on the scene, said that Suge's head was "gushing blood" and that he had "legitimate concern" for Tupac.

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Another theory comes from former LAPD detective Greg Kading.

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Kading believes that Sean Combs, CEO of the East Coast record label Bad Boy Records, orchestrated Tupac's death.

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Kading also got Keith Davis, a Crips gang member, to confess on tape that Diddy paid him $1 million to kill Tupac and Suge. Davis even named his cousin, Orlando Anderson, as the gunman.

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Davis said, "Orlando rolled down the window, and popped him. If they would have drove on my side, I would have popped them." Davis claimed Diddy's motive was defensive, as he was afraid Suge was put a hit on him first. Tupac was only included because Diddy had beef with him after he released "Hit ’Em Up."

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This wasn't the first time Tupac was shot, either. On Nov. 30, 1994, he was shot at multiple times at a recording studio in New York. Tupac said he believed it was people associated with Diddy.

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The Diddy theory is also supported by Dexter Isaac's claims that Diddy hired him to rob Tupac at Quad Recording Studio in NYC. Diddy denied any involvement, saying, "This story is pure fiction and completely ridiculous."

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It should also be noted that Keith Davis was looking at 25 years to life (due to unrelated crimes) if he didn't cooperate with authorities.

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The fourth theory is that Tupac was killed by the Jewish Defense League, an extremist pro-Israel group. The FBI collected potential threats against Tupac from the JDL, but was never able to make a clear link.

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The last and perhaps craziest theory is that Tupac faked his own death. As recently as 2015, a (admittedly unreliable) website reported that a man named David Myers assisted Tupac in faking his death with the help of Suge Knight. Some people subscribe to this theory and think that Tupac is alive and well in Cuba.

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Despite all the theories, we cannot know for sure who killed Tupac Shakur. Comment below your own theory! And don't miss next week's episode of BuzzFeed Unsolved, where we cover the death of the Biggie Smalls.

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