Attorneys for Tupac Shakur's alleged murderer Duane "Keefe D" Davis have asked a judge to release him from custody. The request came in a recently-filed court document obtained by KTNV.
Davis is accused of orchestrating the iconic West Coast rapper's murder back in 1996. The member of the South Side Compton Crips was arrested in Las Vegas in September following nearly three decades of confusion surrounding the case. He's been held without bail ever since.
The attorneys want Davis released on his own recognizance or for his bail to be lowered to a "reasonable" amount below $100,000, according to the document filed on Thursday, Dec. 14.
"Duane should not be denied bail in this case. It cannot be said that the proof is evident and the presumption great that Duane is guilty of first-degree murder for the death of Shakur," the filing says. "This Court should release Duane on house arrest with electronic monitoring pending trial."
Lawyers claim that prosecutors used an "astounding amount of hearsay and speculative testimony" during grand jury proceedings.
That includes references to "Compton Street Legend," a book Davis allegedly helped write. Lawyers say prosecutors didn't identify which parts of the book came from the defendant.
Attorneys also took issue with evidence gleaned from an interview with Davis posted to YouTube. In the clip, he reportedly claimed his nephew Orlando Anderson was the shooter. Prosecutors allege that the killing was retaliation for an incident where Shakur and his counterparts attacked Anderson in a casino lobby. Anderson denied any involvement in the shooting and was murdered in an unrelated incident two years later.
"The truthfulness of the content of the interviews was never verified," the court filing says. "The book and interviews were done for entertainment purposes and to make money."
Davis' lawyers also claim the defendant's health has deteriorated during his time in custody.
"He is not getting his bi-monthly oncologist check-ups. Additionally, his heart health has declined. He was put back on a group of medications to try to get things under control," the filing says.
"He has to take these medications in jail because he is unable to do the things necessary to maintain proper health. His diet in jail is terrible. He is given heavily processed meals full of sodium that barely pass as food."
The attorneys added that Davis has "moved on from his old lifestyle" and is now a "well regarded" member of the community in Henderson, a suburb of Las Vegas where he's lived for the past ten years.
The defendant has pleaded not guilty. His next court date is scheduled for Jan. 2 and his trial is slated to begin on June 3. If convicted, Davis could potentially be facing life in prison.
Shakur was born in New York City, but moved to the Bay Area as a teenager and became an integral part of the California rap scene. His studio albums Me Against the World and All Eyez on Me both made it to the No. 1 spot on the Billboard 200. Shakur also penned chart-topping singles like "California Love" and "How Do U Want It."