Before rapper Tupac Shakur was murdered in 1996 in Las Vegas, he was shot five times at New York City’s Quad Recording Studios on Nov. 30, 1994, by an unknown gunman.
The shooting sparked a vicious East Coast-West Coast hip-hop feud, which resulted in Tupac’s murder in 1996 and rival rapper Notorious B.I.G.’s murder in 1997. No arrests have ever been made, and neither murder has ever been solved.
But now, a prison inmate named Dexter Isaac has come forward to tell AllHipHop.com that he was one of the men who ambushed Shakur in 1994.
Isaac, who is currently serving life in prison for an unrelated murder, says that he was paid $2,500 for the attempted hit by former music mogul James Rosemond (a.k.a. “Jimmy Henchman”). Henchman’s lawyer Jeffrey Lichtman, of course, denies his client’s involvement.
“It’s a flat out lie. Dexter Isaac is not claiming this 17 years later to clear his conscience,” Lichtman tells the N.Y. Daily News. “He’s doing it because he’s told anybody who will listen he doesn’t want to die in prison. He has kids and wants to work off his sentence. He can’t be trusted.”
Isaac and Henchman were friends and business partners back in the ’80s and ’90s, with Isaac helping Henchman create his first company, Henchman Entertainment, in 1989. The friendship has obviously gone sour, and Henchman recently claimed that Isaac was helping the government build a narcotics case against him. Isaac is reportedly furious at being called a “rat,” which is one of the reasons he decided to come forward with news of his involvement.
“I want to apologize to (Shakur’s) family and for the mistake I did for that sucker (Jimmy Henchman),” Isaac says. “I am trying to clean it up to give (Tupac and B.I.G.’s) mothers some closure.”
The 1994 shooting at Quad Studios put Shakur in the hospital with five gunshot wounds. Shakur accused Notorious B.I.G. of involvement, and B.I.G. retaliated in song. The war of words raged for a while until Shakur was murdered on the street in Las Vegas, and B.I.G. was killed a year later.
On Thursday, a New York Police Department spokesperson told the Associated Press that it will be investigating Isaac’s claim to see if there is any truth in it.