The Grio — The unsolved murders of Tupac Shakur and Notorious B.I.G. are hip-hop’s most infamous cold cases.
Information on the murders dried up since they occurred over 14 years ago. Both cases occurred at busy intersections in major cities, and were six months a part. There have been documentaries, conspiracy theories, endless commentary and speculation as to what happened and most notably who was responsible since that time.
A report released by CNN stated that the investigation into the death of Biggie Smalls is heating up thanks to new, undisclosed information. This news has everyone once again intrigued at the notion of finding justice for one of the genre’s iconic figures.
The task force, made up of the Los Angeles Police Department, L.A. County District Attorney’s Office and the FBI, is actively pursuing leads in the case. Even with the prospect of new information available, old sentiments about the case have crept up.
Was Biggie’s death a simple case of retaliation? There are the people who can’t be convinced that Death Row Records founder Suge Knight had nothing to do with either murder, while others insist that any investigation should center on Knight’s still ominous presence in the case. The court of public opinion hasn’t been kind to Knight since the murders, but he doesn’t seem to be swayed by it.
Will this process bring closure to Voletta Wallace, Biggie’s mother? If justice is found of course–but the hip-hop community hasn’t been fair to her in many ways. She’s never had ample opportunity to make peace with her son’s death because she’s been constantly peeling the scab for the last 13 years answer questions about his murder, many of which, don’t have real answers. His widow, Faith Evans, has voiced her skepticism that the case will ever be solved by the judicial system.
A statement released by the attorney for Voletta Wallace and Biggie’s estate said the family was “greatly pleased with any advancement” in the case and would not do anything to interfere with the investigation, according to TMZ.
Still, there are some who are completely unsympathetic towards both rappers’ demise believing they both got the sharp edge of a dangerous they played.
But why do we care so much? Other figures in the genre have been gunned down without the satisfaction of suspects except for Tupac Shakur and Notorious B.I.G.
What’s craziest about the lack of information in both cases is that investigators are able to recreate both incidents with extreme accuracy, but they just can’t lock down the people involved. Glaring holes abound, but in Biggie’s case in particular, there’s been one voice that’s consistently linked both murders in a web of police corruption.
Russell Poole is a retired LAPD detective who has long said he believes Suge Knight ordered a hit and insisted that his own LAPD colleagues worked against him to cover up their own involvement and avoid an even larger scandal, going as far as forcing him to retire because he was getting “too close to the truth”.