Scuffle And Shooting
Date: September 7, 1996
Trajectory: To Vegas
Choice or Circumstance: Circumstance
Complex says: It did not take long after Tupac Shakur’s return to life as a free man for him to realize that he'd signed over much of his freedom to Suge Knight. While claiming undying loyalty to Death Row, Shakur was already, by many accounts, distancing himself from the company — firing Death Row’s lawyer, forming his own production company.
It was against this backdrop that Shakur accompanied Knight to the Mike Tyson-Bruce Seldon boxing match at the MGM Grand hotel in Las Vegas. After the brief fight, Shakur and Knight got into one of their own in the lobby with rival gang member Orlando Anderson.
After the incident, Shakur and Knight left the hotel in a black BMW. Stopped in traffic on the Strip, another car pulled up alongside Knight’s. A gunman emerged, and pumped four shots into Tupac Shakur’s body, one of the bullets grazing Suge Knight’s forehead.
Transported to University Medical Center, Shakur would die of his injuries six days later, surrounded by his mother, girlfriend Kidada Jones, and other family and friends. In the wake of the shooting, many assumed that the hotel scuffle with Anderson might have prompted a revenge attack.
Others who knew of Shakur’s unhappiness with Suge Knight saw the shooting as part of a nefarious plot by Knight. Still others assumed that the orders to kill might have come from Puffy, Bad Boy and Big. The case would never be settled, but this much was sure: Tupac Amaru Shakur, the Black Power prince with so much promise, was dead.