LAPD Reopens Biggie Smalls Murder Case

New information reinvigorates investigation

Friday, Jan 7, 2011  |  Updated 5:45 PM EDT
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LAPD Reopens Biggie Smalls Murder Case

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On March 9, 1997, rapper Biggie Smalls (aka The Notorious B.I.G.) left a Vibe Magazine after partywith his entourage, including Sean "Puffy" Combs. Biggie's car was stopped at a red light when a black Chevy Impala pulled up. The driver rolled down his window, drew a 9 mm blue-steel pistol and fired, putting four bullets into Biggie's the chest. He was pronounced dead later that evening. Theories behind the motive vary, but the most popular involves a bi-coastal feud with rapper Tupac Shakur.

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Los Angeles Police have reopened the investigation into who killed Brooklyn born rapper Biggie Smalls according to sources  close to the investigation.

New information that surfaced several months ago "reinvigorated" the case, leading the LAPD to take another look at the slaying of  "The "Ready to Die" star, a law enforcement told CNN.

Smalls, 24, born Christopher Wallace and also known as the Notorious B.I.G., was gunned down in L.A. while driving away from a VIBE magazine album release party at the Petersen Automotive Museum on March 9, 1997.

 LAPD suspect the killer was a lone gunman in a Chevy Impala who sprayed Biggie's Suburban. Witnesses described the gunman as an African-American man wearing a suit and a bow-tie.

 The sources said they could not discuss or describe the new information, citing the ongoing investigation.  Also aiding in the investigation: the L.A. County District Attorney and the FBI.

Investigators long suspected that Smalls was killed in a East Coast/West Cost rivalry between rappers, which also claimed the life of Tupac Shakur six months before -- and his slaying also remains unsolved.

Wallace's family sued the LAPD in 2006, alleging a cover-up; the suit was dismissed last year.

Los Angeles City Councilman Bernard Parks, who was chief of police at the time, said allegations of a police cover-up were  "absurd."

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