"Bitches wondering who shot me?"
2Pac was about to leave Death Row Records. His album entitled "Don Killuminati : The 7 Day Theory" was the last album he had to do for Death Row Records. He was now going to work on his new record company called "Makaveli Records". Makaveli Records is the the new record company 2Pac planned on doing with "Tha Outlaw Immortalz".
With 2pac not on the label anymore Death Row Records wasn't going to make any money off 2Pac. If they killed 2Pac everything related to him would bring in a whole lot of cash. And, they would now have all of his unreleased songs which they would release under their lable on soundtracks, compilation albums and possibly even new 2Pac albums. It also gets rid of the competition they'd receive from Makaveli Records.
Death Row Records was very uncooperative with the police after 2Pac's death. They hardly told the police anything . In many occasions, the police and news reporters couldn't even find people on Death Row Records to question. ABC interviewed Suge Knight after the shooting of 2Pac. He was asked, "If you knew who killed 2Pac, would you tell the police?". Suge then replied "Absolutely Not".
If you know about "Makaveli Records", you know about The Outlaw Immortalz. They are the rappers who would be working with 2Pac on "Makaveli Records". One of the members who went by the name "Kadafi" was reportedly going to cooperate with the police soon afterwards turns up dead.
Death Row Records now goes by the name "New & Untouchable". This name started being used when the Makaveli album came out... What makes them untouchable now? Death Row Records, (specifically Suge Knight) had 2Pac killed to earn ALL revenues from his soon-to-be released material. Also, Death Row Records owed 2Pac a reported $9,892,814 and if 2Pac was dead, they would obviously no longer owe him this money.
Why did Suge Knight drive the complete opposite direction of the 2 hospitals in Las Vegas, one being the largest in Vegas? He almost drove a full mile before the car stopped on its own. If Pac was really shot, this waste of time could have killed him. When the shooting started Suge did a U-turn and headed West toward the strip. If he would have driven straight on Flamingo he would of headed straight towards one of the hospitals. By the time he stopped the car he was 3 miles away from the hospital that was 2 miles directly in front of him on Flamingo and 3.5 miles from University Hospital.Seems odd for someone not to know where to go who is from Vegas and familiar with the surroundings.
The Rise & Fall of Suge Knight / Death Row
Suge Knight was born Marion Knight in Compton, Los Angeles. Early on he was involved with the Mob Piru Bloods street gang and later in life even wore their colors, Red. Knight went to college on a football scolarship in Las Vegas and even played as a replacement player on the Oakland Raiders when football was on strike in the 80's.Knight became a bodyguard standing 6'4 and weighing in a a massive 320 pounds.
He became known for his acts of violence including forcing business rivals to drink urine to get what he wanted. His 1st run in with the law was in 1987 for auto theft, concealing a weapon, and attempted murder charges yet he got off with only probabtion. 2 years later he formed his own music comapny and made his first big money by making Vanilla ICE sign over the royalties from his smash CD "To the extreme". Vanilla ICE accused Knight of hanging him over a high rise balcony to get what he wanted and later retracted the entire story. In 1992 Knight was arrested for assaulting 2 rappers who used the phone without his consent and sent to prison for 9 years but only received 2 plus probation.Knight opened a night club called "662" which stood for "MOB" his gang affiliation, on a telephone keypad,and pleaded no contest for firearms trafficking and was sentenced yet again to probabtion.Knights feud with Sean "Puffy" Combs East vs. West became ugly when Knight insulted Combs live at an awards show.Death Row took a dramatic change for the good when Knight posted bail for Tupac Shakur. Shakur brought Deat Row back to life again and West coast music which at the time was shifting to the East. The label suffered when Dr. Dre decided to leave Death Row and start his own record label things were getting out of hand at this point. Pac and Knight were all about the ganster lifestyle when Las Vegas happened. Knight violated his probation for his part in the lobby after the Tyson fight and was sentenced to 9 years in prison and that spelled the end of the Death Row record empire.
When Biggie was murdered in the same fashion as Pac all specuation went towards Knight. During Knights time in prision his house was raided and the police seized a vehicle thought to be the the getaway car in Smalls murder.Knight was released from Prison in 2001 serving only 5 years and went straight back to work renaming the label "Tha Row". In 2002 the offices of tha row were raided by police looking for evidence in the murders of 2 gang killings but only Knights associates were connected he was clean. But Knight was not to be around gang members so once again he violated his parole and was given short jail time and 2oo hours service in the community.In 2003 Knight was arrested again for assaulting a parking lot attendant but only served one year was released in 2004.
Tupac hugged him, wept, and said, "I know I'm selling my soul to the devil
Kenner drafted a handwritten, three-page agreement for Tupac to sign. Within a week, in a stunning coincidence, the New York Court of Appeals granted him leave to post bail. (The money was provided by Interscope and a division of Time Warner, althought Tupac always gave Suge full credit.)
Knight and Kenner arrived in a private plan and white stretch limousine to pick Tupac up. Underscoring the degree of porousness between Interscope and Death Row, Tupac was, according to someone familiar with the negotiation, given a "verbal release" from his Interscope contract. As for Kenner's handwritten document, Ogletree, who not see it until much later, says, "It wasn't a legal contract....It was absurd that anyone with an opportunity to reflect would agree to those terms. It was only because he was in prison that he signed it. Tupac was saying, 'My freedom is everything. If you can get me my freedom, you can have access to my artistic product.'"
It was in Suge Knight, many thought, especially when they saw the two together--the slender, lithe youth shadowed by the other's massive bulk, the one all animation, the other exuding authority--that he found that connection. Tupac and Knight seemed almost inseperable in the months after Tupac's release from prison; they worked together long hours in the studio, and socialized when they were through. One of Tupac's friends remembers watching them sing a song from the soundtrack of "Gridlock'd": "You Ain't Never Had a Friend Like Me."
The combination of Tupac and Knight seems to have been combustible, with each activating the most explosive elements in the other. Someone who has known Knight well for years points out that it was after Tupac arrived at Death Row that its signature excess became even more pronounced--fancy clothes, gold and diamond jewelry (especially heavy medallions, laden with diamonds and rubies, bearing the Death Row symbol of a hooded figure in an electric chair), Rolls-Royces (four were purchased to celebrate Snoop Doggy Dogg's acquittal on murder charges), and lots of women. Before Tupac, a knowledgeable insider pointed out, "Death Row had not had a real star. They had Snoop and Dre--they're entertainers. Snoop could be sitting quietly over there in a corner"--he gestured to one end of the restaurant we were sitting in--"but if Tupac were here he would create such a ruckus. People would be saying, 'That's Tupac!' He had star aura. Suge saw that, and he liked that. All of a sudden, there were all these pictures of Suge, together with Tupac, feeding off each other."
ONCE Tupac came out of prison and joined Death Row, he probably did more to stoke the flames of a much publicized feud between East and West Coast rappers than anyone. For all the posturing and the displays of bravado and the aspersions cast on everyone's integrity, this was primarily a feud about money. Rap had originated in the East, but, starting in the late eighties, the gangsta rappers from Los Angeles were more successful. Then Puffy Combs's Bad Boy Records, which was based in New York, began putting out its own version of gangsta rap--which the West insisted was merely derivative. Watani Tyehimba told me that much of Tupac's anger at Biggie Smalls, Puffy's most successful rapper, was based on professional jealousy: Tupac was in jail, and Biggie's single "One More Chance" was No. 1 on the charts. In an interview in The Source in March, 1996, Tupac claimed he'd been sleeping with Biggie's wife, the singer Faith Evans, and he went so far as to taunt Biggie about it in a song: "I fucked your bitch, you fat motherfucker."
When the East Coast-West Coast war was simply verbal, it was useful for its marketing possibilities. But it may also have played into a real, not hyped, desire for vengeance on Knight's part, since he is said to have blamed Puffy for a close friend's murder. The feud moved to a new plane at a Christmas bash in 1995, hosted by Death Row at the Ch�teau Le Blanc mansion, in Hollywood Hills. A record promoter from New York, Mark Anthony Bell, who is an associate of Puffy Combs, is said to have been lured upstairs to a room where Knight, Tupac, and their entourage had been drinking. Bell was allegedly tied to a chair, interrogated about the killing of Suge's friend, and hounded for the address of Puffy and Puffy's mother. He is said to have been beaten with broken champagne bottles, and Knight is said to have urinated into a jar and told Bell to drink from it. Bell received an estimated six-hundred-thousand-dollar settlement from Death Row, and he declined to press charges. But a friend of Bell's told me that he had reached him in Jamaica about a month after the incident, and Bell had said to him, "I'm here till I heal. They busted me up bad!" People who were with Tupac the last year of his life are not surprised that he would be involved in something like this. "When Tupac was with Suge," one friend says, "Suge would get him all stirred up, and he'd try to behave like a gangster." He recalled another incident, in the spring of 1996, when a producer said that he wanted to leave Death Row with Dr. Dre. "He came out all bloodied up," Tupac's friend said. "And Tupac was a part of that. He had to show Suge what he was made of."
TUPAC always wanted to be a leader, not a follower," Preston Holmes, the president of Def Pictures, who had worked with Tupac in the movies "Juice" and "Gridlock'd," says. "And in order to be on top in that world, he had to act a certain way--screwing the most women, stomping the most guys, talking the most shit. But I had conversations with him in this period, when he would say, 'Gangsta rap is dead.' I think he was trying to extricate himself."
In February, Tupac had decided to start his own production company, called Euphanasia, and he asked his old friend Yaasmyn Fula to come to L.A. to run it. Fula began trying to organize Tupac's business affairs. "We weren't getting copies of the financial accountings," she said. "We'd ask for them, and they'd send a present"--like a car. "I felt like there was this dark cloud over us. I knew so much was wrong--but Pac would say, 'Yas, you can't keep telling me things, I know what I am doing.'" Fula felt that Afeni, from whom she was becoming estranged, had been influenced by Knight's attentions and largesse. Tupac's signing with Death Row had transformed the lived of his extended family, even more than his contract with Interscope had. "They had lived lives of scarcity, worrying about the next meal, worrying about how to pay the rent," Fula says, but now they stayed at the elegant Westwood Marquis hotel for several months, racking up and "astronomical" bill. "Pac felt he was cursed with this dysfunctional family," Fula says, "although he loved them. And as his success grew, especially in the last year, this presence grew. They were always there."
Afeni Shakur says that "Death Row in the beginning treated us much better than Interscope had." But she suggests that she was not oblivious of the dark side of Knight and Death Row. She told me that Tupac had not allowed either Syke or Tupac's young cousins--the Outlawz, who travelled with him and whome he supported (and one of whom, Yafeu Fula, Yaasmyn's son, was shot and killed two months after Tupac's murder)--to sign with Death Row, because he "didn't want any of them to live in bondage." She also told me that when Tupac encouraged her to go out socially with Knight's mother, she believed that he was doing that in order to protect her. "Suge's mother was very nice," Afeni said, "but I never gave her my phone number. We both understood it was the rules of war." The document that Kenner had drafted and Tupac had signed in prison stipulated not only that he would become an artist for Death Row but also that Knight would become his manager and Kenner his lawyer. For Kennery, Death Row's lawyer, also to represent Tupac was at best bad judgement and at worst a clear case of conflict of interest. And if Kenner possessed an ownership interest in Death Row as well, something which has long been rumored in Los Angeles music-industry circles but which Kenner has consistently denied, the conflict would be even more patent. It also might explain how he--a white criminal-defense lawyer who in the eighties handled some of L.A.'s most high-profile drug, racketeering, and murder cases but had virtually no experience in entertainment law--could have emerged at the top of one of the hottest black-music record labels.
Kenner's entr�e, it now seems plain, came through Michael Harris. Paul Palladino, a private investigator who has worked closely with Kenner for years, told me that back in 1991 or so "David was representing Michael Harris on his appeal, and Harris introduced him to Suge." In his unfiled complaint against Death Row and Interscope, Harris alleged that he had had a prison meeting in September, 1991, with Kenner and Knight, to discuss the terms of his investment in what would become Death Row. Harris and Knight were to be equal partners, he alleged, and Kenner was to set up the corporation and help Knight manage it. (Knight and Kenner deny this.) In its first couple of years, other lawyers who were retained by Death Row told me, Kenner was doing its criminal-defense work, and he did not appear to have a broader role. But by 1995 he was, some thought, the proverbial power behind the throne. To many of Tupac's friends, the relationship between Knight and Kenner fit a familiar pattern: a black gangster who has access to the streets works in consort with a white player who is connected to levers of power in the world at large. Knight might wear a ring with the initials "M.O.B."--"Member of Bloods"--but in their eyes Kenner was the real thing. DAVID KENNER began to represent Tupac as his entertainment lawyer for civil and criminal cases in California, but Tupac asked Charles Ogletree to continue to represent him as well. Ogletree told me that he repeatedly wrote letters to Death Row, asking to see the contract Tupac had signed with Death Row in prison and to negotiate a formal contract under more conscionable circumstances; but all his efforts, he said, were "met with silence, diversions, and outright misrepresentations."
Ogletree was also handicapped in his efforts to carry out Tupac's instructions to settle some of his numerous civil lawsuits. "Tupac came out of jail with no money. He would say, 'I want to take care of this case.' I would negotiate a settlement; he would say, 'Good, Death Row has my money, tell them to send the check.'" When the check didn't come, Ogletree continued, "I would call Kenner. He would say, 'It's in the mail.' Then, when it never arrived, he would say he was sending it FedEx. Then, when it didn't arrive, he would say he'd wire it." Ogletree added, "We should have been able to close the deal, but it was never possible. We had to go through the record company. It was as thought he had no life except that given to him by Death Row."
By the late spring, Ogletree says, Tupac was carefully plotting his escape. "He had Euphanasia, he had the Outlawz, he had his movie deals--he was building something that was all to be part of one entity....He had a strategy--the idea was to maintain a friendly relationship with Suge but to separate his business." The precedent of Dr. Dre's departure from Death Row did not seem particularly encouraging. A music-business executive who was friendly with Dre says that Dre left because he was uncomfortable with Knight's "business practices." Dre abandoned his interest in the company in return for a relatively modest financial settlement, and Interscope facilitated the divorce by giving him a lucrative new contract. "Look at Dre," Ogletree says. "Such a brilliant, creative musician. He started Death Row, and in order to get out he had to give up almost everything....Now, what would it take for Tupac, the hottest star around, whose success was only growing?" From a legal standpoint, Ogletree said, it was not so difficult; the contract signed in prison could be challenged. "But you have to live after that....It was a question of how to walk away with your limbs attached and bodily functions operating. "I remember seeing him just before his twenty-fifth birthday," Ogletree continued. "He felt it was a glorious day. He never imagined he'd live to be twenty-five.
Tupac was brilliant, but he wasn't smart," another friend says. "He didn't realize, or refused to accept, what anyone from the street would have known--that you can't fire Kenner, you don't leave Death Row." Suge Knight is said now to maintain that Tupac's differences were with Kenner, not with him. KNIGHT had planned a big party at his Las Vegas club, 662 (on a phone pad the numbers spell "M.O.B."), on September 7th, following the beavyweight-boxing-title fight between Mike Tyson and Bruce Seldon. Tupac was supposed to attend with the Death Row contingent. He had just got back to L.A. from New York that morning, and he decided he was not going to Las Vegas; he told Fula he was going to Atlanta to settle problems with some relatives there, instead. But just a few hours later she learned that he had changed his plans; Knight had persuaded him to go to Las Vegas after all.
Suge Knight Rap Sheet
1) Shot Miami, FL (28-Aug-2005)
2) Attempted Murder 1987, pled no contest
3) Grand Theft Auto 1987, pled no contest
4) Battery 1990, charges dismissed
5) Assault 1992, pled guilty 1995
6) Assault 1996
7) Violating Probation 1996
8) Violating Parole 23-Dec-2002
9) Violating Parole allegedly punched parking lot attendant Mehdi Lazrak 27-Jun-2003
10) Drug Possession: Marijuana Barstow, CA 5-Feb-2005
11) Violating Parole Barstow, CA 5-Feb-2005