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Interview with reporter Cathy Scott about Tupac's death

Q: Why weren't the white Cadillac and the assailants found when Las Vegas is in the middle of a desert? Why did police not give immediate chase or use a helicopter to go after the assailants?

A: On a fight night, there were hundreds of white Cadillacs and limousines in town. Police didn't give chase because by the time they realized where the shooting actually took place, too much time had gone by. The two bike cops who gave chase immediately, following Knight and Tupac and the entourage to the Strip, ended up a mile away from the shooting. It wasn't until about 20 minutes later that the original scene of the shooting was secured. Witnesses told police the assailants headed south, toward Los Angeles when they fled.

Q: The white Cadillac containing the gunman passes an entourage of Shakur's friends, many of them bodyguards. No one gives chase and there are no witnesses. How come?

A: Police have said that a couple of cars from the entourage may have given chase because not all of the ten or so cars in the caravan ended up on the Strip at Harmon. Members of the entourage didn't offer good witness accounts afterwards to police because they claimed they didn't like their treatment (being ordered face down on the ground by police at gunpoint) immediately following the shooting.

Q: Why was Tupac Shakur cremated so soon after his death?

A: Once an autopsy is completed, the family can do what it wishes with the body. It's not unusual in Las Vegas for an autopsy to be done the same day as a homicide. It happens all the time. Immediately following the autopsy a couple of hours after Tupac's death, his body was picked up by a mortuary, his body was cremated overnight, and his mother took his ashes home the next day.

Q: Were there any ballistics tests?

A: Yes. The results have not been made public. Police are only saying that the shots came from a high-caliber semiautomatic gun.

Q: Shakur's vehicle was shot 12 times and Suge Knight was only grazed by a bullet. Why did Shakur get shot all those times and Knight not get hit?

A: Investigators traced 13 rounds shot into the BMW. Knight was grazed by a bullet fragment. The gunman was inside the Cadillac when it pulled up next to the passenger side of the BMW in which Tupac Shakur was sitting. The assailant was near Shakur when he opened fire.

Q: We wanted to know if there was any type of a funeral held for Tupac? Where were Tupac's services held and how come the public didn't know?

A: There was a small ceremony held in Los Angeles that was attended by Tupac's mother, close family and friends. There was also a large memorial service in Atlanta, but no official funeral. He was cremated. His mother held a private service outside and scattered his ashes in a park. The public wasn't invited.

Q: Is it possible that he faked his death?

A: Nope, he didn't fake his own death. Read my book "The Killing of Tupac Shakur" and it will prove it for you. As for plots, those are in the book too.

Q: Supposedly Tupac is a Muslim and Muslim do not believe in being cremated. Was he really cremated?

A: I don't know what religion his mother is, but he was cremated, by Davis Mortuary in Las Vegas. And, he is dead. There's an autopsy photo in the center of my book, "The Killing of Tupac Shakur."

Q: Do you know why there weren't any pictures of Tupac in the hospital or anything?

A: Tupac was on life support machines, including a respirator, for six days, and heavily sedated in the Intensive Care Unit. There were guards outside. It wasn't a time for taking pictures. He was in a coma and unresponsive. I don't know if you've ever seen anybody hooked up and on machines, but it's not pretty.

Q: Is there any other site that I could possibly find out more information about the actual details of the funeral?

A: I don't think so. I've pretty much searched them all (but go for it). The family didn't release a lot of details. A brief service was held at Davis Mortuary in Las Vegas the day after Tupac died. A woman at the mortuary said it was brief and only a few family members and friends attended. Later, in L.A., his ashes were scattered over a park.

Q: What do you think of the statement at the beginning of Makaveli (suge shot him\me)?

A: A lot of people have asked that question. But think about it. Who produced Tupac's music? Suge, so why would Tupac say that, with Death Row as his record label, producing that very song? Suge was very much involved in the production of Tupac's music. I don't believe Tupac ever pointed an accusatory finger at Suge as to the first shooting, in Manhattan in the lobby of Quad Studios. My take on the beginning of Makaveli? I think Tupac is saying something else and it just sounds like "Suge."

Q: I have heard that the autopsy photo is not official. How do you know it is real? I don't believe they would give away autopsy photos.

A: The coroner has confirmed its authenticity. The reason he said it's not an official photo is because it didn't make it into a file folder in homicide or the coroner's office. There were six photos, I'm told, taken of Tupac following the autopsy, all in the same room. One did not make it into a file folder. It was given to me. I didn't question the motives of the person who gave it to me. It's real, and the coroner has confirmed that it was, in fact, taken in his examining room while Tupac's body was on the autopsy table.
"They" didn't give away a photo. A source slipped me the photo. It's not unusual for sources to slip information and documents to reporters. Many government people (coroner's office and police) have access to documents, information AND photos. That's how I got it.

Q: If Tupac really died, how come his movies and albums are still coming out?

A: Tupac recorded more than 150 songs and videos before he died. As soon as he got out of prison, he started working. As many people know, he was a workaholic, working on movies, records and videos simultaneously. His mother, who successfully fought in court to own a part of his undistributed music, is about to release a new album. So what you see now is the work he did before he died. He DID die. In my book, "The Killing of Tupac Shakur," I included a photo of him on the coroner's autopsy table.

Q: Why publish the autopsy picture of Tupac Shakur?

A: It was not a hasty decision to run the photo of Tupac on the autopsy table. The reason the publisher and I decided to do it was because of the mainstream news articles reporting that he was still being alive. Because it was newsworthy, I decided to include it. I knew it would offend some people. It was not done as a promotion. The book is about the murder investigation and the events surrounding it. I'm a journalist and I approached the book in the same way I approach a news story.
There was a "bounty" as you call it, for the photo. $100,000 was offered to the police and the coroner's office. I could have sold the photo. I didn't. I make the same percentage off the book with or without the photo. I did not buy the photo, nor was a crime committed to get it.

Q: Can you tell me where I can purchase your book?

A: Click here to purchase the book.

Q: Do you know why this might have been said by the outlaw Kastro when asked about Kadafi's [Yafeu Fula, a back-up singer in the Outlawz and the only willing witness to Tupac's murder] death, "Can't really talk about that. There's some shit behind that I can't get into."  ----this is taken from the Tuac book from the editors of Vibe. page 135 

A: I believe that Kadafi was killed because he witnessed Tupac's murder. I think people don't want to talk, especially in a book or to the press, because they don't want to be next. It's not necessarily because they know something.

Q: Where is the tattoo of Makaveli on his neck? Why does he have a chain around his neck? Why would he have a chain around his neck if he's dead and getting an autopsy?

A: The tattoo on his back isn't visible because Tupac's body is on its back. The chain around Tupac's neck, is a metal brace that's holding his body down, at his neck, to the gurney. Look closer and you'll see that. It's used by medical examiners on all bodies during autopsies.

Q: Why did Tupac's mom spread his ashes over a park?

A: From what I was told, Tupacís mother, Afeni Shakur, wanted to scatter Tupacís ashes over the neighborhood he felt most at home in, and that was L.A., which was where he was living when he was killed.

Q: Have the cops stop working on the case?

A: The murder investigation has stalled but it is still open. No suspects have formally been named or charged.