LAS VEGAS (KLAS) – Duane “Keffe D” Davis, a self-described gang member accused in the murder of rapper Tupac Shakur, entered a not-guilty plea during his arraignment in a Las Vegas courtroom Thursday after previous delays and possibly parting ways with a private attorney.
Davis, 60, was represented by special public defenders Robert Arroyo and Charles Cano. Two weeks ago Davis appeared in court with defense attorney Ross Goodman, but Goodman told Nexstar’s KLAS on Wednesday that he and Davis were not able to reach terms of an agreement.
Davis told the court he does plan on having Goodman represent him.
Davis was arrested at his Henderson home in September after being indicted by a grand jury for murder with the use of a deadly weapon.
Shakur, 25, was shot in Las Vegas on Sept. 7, 1996. He died a week later.
Duane Keith “Keffe D” Davis is the only person still alive who was in the vehicle from which shots were fired and the only person ever charged with a crime in the case. Prosecutors accuse Davis of being the mastermind behind the drive-by killing. They allege he obtained and provided a gun to someone in the back seat of a Cadillac before the car-to-car gunfire that mortally wounded Shakur and wounded rap music mogul Marion “Suge” Knight.
Davis, 60, is originally from Compton, California. He was arrested Sept. 29 outside a home in suburban Henderson where Las Vegas police served a search warrant July 17, drawing renewed attention to one of hip-hop music’s most enduring mysteries. Davis remains jailed without bail, did not testify before the grand jury that indicted him, and declined from jail to speak with The Associated Press.
Prosecutors on Thursday said they do not plan to take Davis’ case before a review board to decide if the state will seek the death penalty, meaning he could face prison for the rest of his life if convicted.
Clark County District Attorney Steve Wolfson did not specify why the death penalty was not being sought in this case.
Davis’ case is scheduled for a status check in court on Nov. 7.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.