Celebrities, Crime, Fame Brief, Guns / Firearms, Music, Rap, Violence

Fame Brief: Is This the Man Who Shot Tupac?

Tupac Shakur

Back when things were real, musicians didn’t get hurt jet skiing. They got shot. And if realness can be measured in bullet wounds, nobody was as real as rapper extraordinare and do-rag styling visionary Tupac Shakur, who was shot five times in 1994 and then again, fatally, in 1996.  None of the gunmen from either shooting have been identified. Until now.

On Wednesday, permanent resident of federal prison Dexter Isaac confessed to Tupac’s non-fatal 1994 shooting. In his confession, Isaac claims that Suge Knight-like music exec James “Henchman” Rosemond hired Isaac to commit the crime:

In 1994, James Rosemond hired me to rob 2Pac Shakur at the Quad Studio. He gave me $2,500, plus all the jewelry I took, except for one ring, which he wanted for himself. It was the biggest of the two diamond rings that we took. He said he wanted to put the stone in a new setting for his girlfriend at the time, Cynthia Ried. I still have as proof the chain that we took that night in the robbery.

If $2,500 seems low to you, you need to adjust for inflation ($3,765 in today’s dollars). In any event, why is Isaac ratting out Henchman after all these years, after the statute of limitations has run? Henchman, an FBI fugitive wanted for drug charges, recently told the press that Isaac was cooperating with authorities to build a case against him. In order to protect his good name and prove that he is under no circumstances a rat, convicted murderer Isaac is working closely with federal investigators to bring down Henchman. No word on whether Carmen Sandiego is on the case…

There are many reasons to believe Isaac’s confession. He was one of the original suspects in the Quad Studio shooting and his résumé stacks up; he’s serving time for murdering some woman’s husband for another underwhelming reward – a sh**ty house on Long Island. Plus, admitting to the attempted murder of a rap icon can’t be doing him any favors in prison. Tupac himself was not a fan of Henchman and rapped, “Promised a payback, Jimmy Henchman, in due time,” in Against All Odds, but then again, Pac could have been talking about a loan.

On the other hand, Isaac is a murderer. It’s all well and good to claim responsibility for a famous crime once it’s a cold case and you’re in prison for life anyway, but that’s a bit like OJ penning If I Did It once the case was over.  And apparently Isaac has an axe to grind because he feels as though Henchman abandoned him while he’s been locked up.

If you read the confession in its entirety, it sounds pretty legit. The only part that strikes me as false is where he implies that he knows the identities of Tupac’s and Notorious B.I.G.’s killers, even though Tupac is alive and well and dropping hits in Michael Jackson’s recording studio.

But not according to Isaac:

Now I’m not going to talk about my friend Biggie’s death or 2Pac’s death, but I would like to give their mothers some closure. It’s about time that some one did, and I will do so at a different time. Jimmy, you and Puffy like to come off all innocent-like, but as the saying goes: You can fool some of the people some of the time, but you cannot fool all of the people all of the time.

Until then, the real killers of Tupac, Biggie and Nicole Brown Simpson remain at large.

Earlier: Prior installments of Fame Brief

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