Thaddeus Culpepper and Matthew Fletcher, attorneys for former Death Row Records founder Marion “Suge” Knight, were arrested on Thursday, Jan. 25, 2018, on what appears to be charges related to a pattern of making unauthorized disclosures from Knight to the “outside world” in order to help secure Knight a not guilty verdict in his trial for the murder of Terry Carter. Culpepper repeatedly and vehemently denies the disclosures, including Knight’s alleged statements backing the theories presented in the 2017 documentary Tupac Assassination: Battle for Compton, which peels the layers and reveals the context for the shootings of Shakur and Wallace.
According to the L.A. Times, in August 2017, Los Angeles County prosecutors alleged that Culpepper, Knight and others tampered with witnesses and discussed bribes connected to the rap mogul’s murder case. The allegations were detailed in a 22-page court filing, which includes trying to bribe witnesses and “convincing witnesses to fabricate testimony were recorded and transcriptions were presented in court.”
According to the Daily News, the Sheriff’s Department says Fletcher, 53, and Culpepper were arrested for accessory after the fact, defined in California law as “harboring, concealing or aiding a person whom you know has committed a felony, in order to protect him or her from arrest, trial, conviction and/or sentencing.”
Culpepper was arrested at his home around 5 p.m. Fletcher was taken into custody at the Long Beach Courthouse around 2 p.m. and was being held in lieu of $1M bail.
Tupac Assassination: Battle for Compton’s director RJ Bond says, “Culpepper was a guy out there doing whatever he could, legally and maybe not so legally, to portray Knight as a victim in his latest trial. And even though he tried to deny making that claim, which he’s made to many people, including Poole [late LAPD Detective Russell Poole], we think Culpepper said what he said and looks to be 100 percent in keeping with what he has been arrested for. Of course, he will deny these allegations too. But we know he said it, we believe Knight’s current woes may tie to 20-year-old events. Culpepper’s statement to Poole moves fluently with what they are trying to do as a defense team. They just look to have stepped into something they can’t threaten their way out of. We loved the endorsement [of our film] because it appeared to be congruent with our message. If you want to know why, watch the movie.”