The former street gang leader facing charges for orchestrating the 1996 drive-by murder of Tupac Shakur in Las Vegas is expected to enter a not guilty plea to the murder charge. There are uncertainties surrounding whether he will retain a defense attorney or if a public defender will be appointed.
Duane Keith “Keffe D” Davis, the only surviving occupant of the vehicle from which the fatal shots were fired that claimed Shakur’s life, is scheduled for arraignment in a Nevada courtroom. This comes after his unsuccessful attempt to hire local defense attorney Ross Goodman.
Two weeks ago, Goodman represented Davis outside the court, arguing that prosecutors lack crucial evidence and witnesses regarding the murder that transpired 27 years ago. However, no explanation was provided on Wednesday for why Davis couldn’t retain Goodman as his attorney.
Davis, aged 60 and originally from Compton, California, was apprehended on September 29 outside a residence in suburban Henderson, where Las Vegas police executed a search warrant on July 17, reigniting interest in the unresolved murder of the iconic figure in hip-hop music.
According to the indictment, Davis allegedly supplied a firearm to an individual in the Cadillac from which the gunfire was directed at Shakur, ultimately leading to his fatal injury, as well as wounding rap music mogul Marion “Suge” Knight at an intersection near the Las Vegas Strip. Shakur succumbed to his injuries a week later at the age of 25.
Marion “Suge” Knight, who is now 58 years old, is serving a 28-year prison sentence in California for his involvement in the death of a Compton businessman in 2015.
Prosecutors contend that Shakur’s murder in Las Vegas was a result of the intense rivalry between East Coast and West Coast factions vying for supremacy in the then-dubbed “gangsta rap” music genre. This feud followed an altercation at a Las Vegas Strip casino involving Shakur and Davis’ nephew, Orlando “Baby Lane” Anderson.
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During multiple interviews and a 2019 memoir in which he disclosed details about leading a Crips sect in Compton, prosecutors assert that Davis incriminated himself in the murder.