Biggie's Family Sues Officers

Lawsuit alleges cover-up by members of L.A.P.D.

April 12, 2002 12:00 AM ET

Five years after the murder of Christopher Wallace (a.k.a. Notorious B.I.G. and Biggie Smalls), his widow, singer Faith Evans, and his mother, Voletta Wallace, and his two children have filed a wrongful death suit against the city of Los Angeles, Los Angeles Police Department Chief Bernard Parks, former Police Chief Willie Williams and others.

Filed April 9th in federal court, the lawsuit claims that members of the LAPD were aware of an "atmosphere of violence and alleged criminality" among members of Death Row Records and a street gang who "had consistently exhibited significant animosity" toward Wallace. The suit also alleges that the LAPD was aware of a specific threat to Wallace, who was gunned down in 1997, and could have prevented the murder, and that the crime was not fully investigated subsequently.

Details of the LAPD's affiliation with Death Row Records and the possible link between Wallace's murder and the police department were reported in the Rolling Stone feature "The Murder of Notorious B.I.G.: Gangster Cops, Suge Knight and the LAPD Scandal" last June.

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