The leader of a Southern California street gang charged in the 1996 fatal shooting of Tupac Shakur in Las Vegas will appear in court Thursday with a lawyer from one of the city’s best-known political families , one that has represented gangsters, athletes and other famous clients. .
Attorney Ross Goodman told The Associated Press on Wednesday that he will appear in defense of Duane “Keffe D” Davis against accusations that Davis orchestrated the drive-by killing of the rap icon. Davis won’t enter a plea immediately, Goodman said, he will ask for two more weeks to confirm he will be hired for Davis’ case.
Davis, 60, of Compton, California, was arrested Sept. 29 outside his home in suburban Henderson. He told a police officer wearing a body camera that he moved there in January because his wife was involved in opening grocery stores in Nevada.
Edi Faal, Davis’ longtime personal attorney in Los Angeles, told AP after Davis’ first court appearance Oct. 4 that he was helping Davis find a defense attorney in Nevada. Faal confirmed Goodman’s involvement on Wednesday.
Goodman is the son of former Las Vegas Mayor Oscar Goodman and current Mayor Carolyn Goodman. As an attorney for more than two decades, he has handled a series of high-profile cases, including an August plea deal in which former Las Vegas Raiders cornerback Damon Arnette resolved a felony charge of firearm by pleading guilty to two misdemeanors.
His father, Oscar Goodman, is a lawyer who represented mob figures, including the ill-fated Anthony “Tony the Ant” Spilotro, before serving three terms as mayor. He was famous for his public appearances with a martini in hand and a showgirl on each arm.
Spilotro was the basis for a character in the 1995 film “Casino.” He fought allegations of embezzling resort receipts and led a legendary break-in ring nicknamed the “Hole in the Wall Gang” before disappearing in June 1986 with his brother, Michael Spilotro. Their bodies were found buried in an Indiana cornfield. The mob boss was convicted in 2007 of both murders.
Ross Goodman also represented Chris Lammons, an Indianapolis Colts cornerback, when he and New Orleans Saints running back Alvin Kamara pleaded guilty in July to misdemeanors to resolve a battery case. and injuries resulting from the beating of a man at a Las Vegas nightclub the weekend before the game. 2022 NFL Pro Bowl.
In July, a police raid on Davis’ home sparked renewed interest in Shakur’s unsolved murder, one of hip-hop music’s enduring mysteries. Davis’ indictment made him the first person ever arrested in connection with Shakur’s death and raised questions about the unsolved March 1997 murder in Los Angeles of Notorious B.I.G., or “Biggie Smalls,” a rival rapper whose legal name is Christopher Wallace.
Davis has denied any involvement in that murder, but in recent years he has publicly described his role in Shakur’s death, including in interviews and in a tell-all 2019 memoir describing his life as the leader of a gang cult Crips in Compton. Davis is the only living person among the four men who were in the car from which shots were fired at Shakur and rap music mogul Marion “Suge” Knight.
Shakur died a week later at the age of 25. Knight was injured but survived. Now 58, he is serving a 28-year prison sentence for the January 2015 death of a Compton businessman.