by Karanja A. M. Ajanaku
Special to The New Tri-State Defender
Rap-icon Tupac Shakur lives on as a legend in the eyes of millions, and this increasingly is true among a generation of younger fans.
This was surprising to me at first, with Tupac's career having thrived so many years ago. I didn't know how interested younger audiences were until the idea of a valid story recently blindsided me while checking my Twitter timeline. Twitter trending topics like #WhoshotPac and #Justice4Pac were all over the place.
Now, I'm definitely a Tupac fan, but initially I couldn't figure out exactly what was sparking all the new commotion. Then I did my research.
James – aka 'Jimmy Henchman' – Rosemond's name has been brought up in reference to Tupac numerous times, recently for being involved in the 1994 robbery and non-fatal shooting of Tupac. Dexter Isaac is an inmate currently serving a life sentence for murder, robbery and other offenses. On June 15, 2012, Isaac came forward with a confession involving him in the Nov. 30, 1994 shooting of Tupac, saying that he wanted to bring "closure to Tupac's mother."
The new-age newshound that I am, I posted a status on Facebook asking who knew about the controversy and what they thought about Isaac coming out with this news 17 years later.
Dennis Johnson, 20, of Talladega, Ala., wrote, "I think Issac's lying and if he's not, something else fishy is going on."
I probed some more and found a song that Tupac released called "Against All Odds." That song indicates that Tupac knew Henchman had set him up and it promised Henchman a payback in due time.
"Tupac got set up by Jimmy for sure," said Tina Burnett of Nashville. "I don't think it's coming out now for someone's attention.''
I also learned that Isaac claims Rosemond gave him $2,500 to do the dirty work, with Isaac also netting jewelry taken during the robbery.
"I think it could be closure for one of the largest murder mysteries of all times," posted Brian March, 18, of Memphis, suggesting that Isaac may have been connected to Tupac's death in 1996,
Fact or fiction? I'll definitely be keeping you posted about this still ongoing conspiracy.
For one last word about a younger generation of Tupac fans, check out what Kennedy Wicks, a 17-year-old Whitehaven High School graduate, added to the mix.
"We pretty much grew up listening to Tupac because the generation before us did," Wicks said. "To us, he's not 'old' Tupac. It's like he's frozen in time."
Tupac died Sept. 13, 1996, six days after he was shot while riding in a car in Los Angeles with Death Row Records CEO Marion "Suge" Knight.
Born June 16, 1971, Tupac would be 41, had he lived.