The Los Angeles Times has retracted its March 17 article “An Attack on Tupak Shakur Launched a Hip-Hop War” because the newspaper said it “relied heavily on information that The Times no longer believes to be credible.” The article, by Chuck Philips, purported to relate “new” information about a 1994 assault on rap star Tupac Shakur, including a description of events contained in FBI reports. The Times said it concluded that the FBI reports were fabricated and that some other sources do not support major elements of the story.
The article reported that newly discovered information supported Shakur’s claims that associates of music executive Sean “Diddy” Combs orchestrated an attack in which Shakur was injured in New York City in 1994. The Times now believes that one of Combs’ supposed associates fabricated the FBI reports and concocted his role in the assault. The Times began investigating the accuracy of its reporting after William Bastone, editor of The SmokingGun.com, called Philips to say he believed the purported FBI documents were fabricated.