Tupac Shakur’s stepfather speaks on freedom after 35 years behind in prison
Mutulu Shakur, Tupac’s step father who has an advanced form of cancer, is making up for lost time with his family after the Black liberation activist was released on parole from a 60-year prison sentence in December 2022.
“I’m so happy to be free,” Shakur, Tupac Shakur’s stepfather, told NBC News. “I fought hard every day that I was incarcerated. I have a lot to do, hoping that society gives me another swing at it. But my life is an example of what could happen. I am very hopeful.”
The 72-year-old was released from federal prison on Dec. 16 after more than 35 years behind bars on racketeering, robbery and robbery murder charges.
The organized movement advocating for Shakur’s release stepped up its efforts in recent years as the man developed myriad health issues, most notably stage 3 multiple myeloma, a blood cancer that can affect the bones and kidneys. Shakur has endured drastic weight loss due to his illnesses and treatments; has had Covid at least twice; and has relied on IV feeding tubes on and off in the months leading up to his release, his attorney, Brad Thomson, previously said. Thomson said doctors with the Federal Bureau of Prisons gave Shakur less than six months to live last May, noting that his cancer treatment had stopped working.
Shakur was considered the leader of a group that robbed a Brink’s armored car in Rockland County, New York, in 1981, leaving two police officers and a Brink’s guard dead.
Shakur had been denied release several times over the years, with authorities insisting that his crimes were too serious and his health had not deteriorated enough to warrant release. However, in the October decision, officials told Shakur, “We now find your medical condition renders you so infirm of mind and body that you are no longer physically capable of committing any Federal, State, or local crime.”
Shakur expressed joy over reuniting with his family, of whom he said he feels proud.
“It’s been a great, great day, in 38 years of life, that I have had an opportunity to hug and nestle with my six children and three grandchildren,” he said. “I am so proud of them, that they have survived and are presently in good physical and, more importantly, mental strength in light of what my life has caused them.