Richard Corkery/NewsTupac Shakur was shot and wounded outside Manhattan's Quad Studio in 1994 - two years before he was fatally shot in Las Vegas.
A convicted killer has stepped forward to say he was behind the 1994 robbery and shooting of Tupac Shakur that fueled the bloody rivalry many blame for the rapper's murder two years later.
Dexter Isaac, now serving a life sentence, told AllHipHop.com that he robbed Shakur outside the Quad Studio in Manhattan in November 1994 on the orders of hip hop mogul James "Jimmy Henchman" Rosemond.
He said Rosemond, the CEO of Czar Entertainment who manages Mike Tyson and Sean Kingston, paid him $2,500 "plus all the jewelry" except for one diamond ring Rosemond allegedly wanted for his girlfriend.
"It's a flat out lie," Rosemond's lawyer Jeffrey Lichtman told the Daily News. "Dexter Isaac is not claiming this 17 years later to clear his conscience. He's doing it because he's told anybody who will listen he doesn't want to die in prison. He has kids and wants to work off his sentence. He can't be trusted."
Lichtman said Rosemond is wanted on a federal fugitive warrant after prosecutors indicted him in a case that includes narcotics charges.
Rosemond has denied any wrongdoing and said in a statement last month that Isaac was a government informant.
Isaac, 46, told AllHipHop he's coming forward now because he's mad Rosemond called him a rat and because he wanted to make amends.
"I want to apologize to (Shakur's) family and for the mistake I did for that sucker," Isaac said from the Metropolitan Detention Center in Brooklyn. "I am trying to clean it up to give (Shakur's and Biggie's) mothers some closure."
The 1994 robbery at the midtown recording studio landed Shakur at a Manhattan hospital with five gunshot wounds.
Biggie answered back in his songs.
Shakur was later shot four times on a Las Vegas street in September 1996 and died six days later in an unsolved murder.
One year later Biggie was killed by an unknown gunman in a drive-by shooting in Los Angeles.
With Joe Kemp