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Tupac Shakur's murder still resonates 20 years later (aired 2014)

Tupac Shakur in 1994
Steve Eichner, Getty Images
Tupac Shakur in 1994

Editor's Note: this story originally ran in November 2014.

Twenty years ago this month, hip-hop artist Tupac Shakur was heading east on Flamingo Road, likely to a gig he had a Club 662, when a car pulled up and shot into his BMW. He died six days later.

Suge Knight was in the BMW, too. He took a bullet in the back of the head and survived.

Knight, then owner of Death Row Records, has been in the news ever since in a variety of legal scrapes. And just a few weeks ago, police arrested him on charges of stealing a camera belonging to a celebrity photographer.

Knight’s arrest stirred up old memories of Shakur and his unsolved murder. Though their numbers have dwindled, some still pay homage to the rapper by pouring out alcohol or leaving flowers at the site of his death.

Today we’re going to talk to about Shakur and ask where his death ranks in the long history of sensational crime in Las Vegas. Was he just another entertainer to die in the prime of life at age 25? Or do people still identify with us message of "us versus them," especially "us versus the police"? Do the troubles in Ferguson, Missouri, prove that Shakur's anger 18 years ago is just as relevant today?

Related Story: The Last Words of Tupac Shakur
From NPR: Tupac's Legacy, 20 Years On

Guests: Patricia Cunningham, host, KCEP 88.1 FM host; Cathy Scott, author, "The Killing of Tupac Shakur"; Sean DeFrank, writer, "The Last Words of Tupac"; James Allen, hip-hop artist "Spoatymac," and owner, Heat City record label

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