LAPD detectives have apologized to the family of the late Notorious B.I.G. for failing to warn them about the planned release of his autopsy report last Friday.
The rapper (real name Christopher Wallace) was killed 15 years ago in a drive-by, but the Notorious B.I.G. autopsy report had never seen the light of day.
The detectives intended to notify the rapper's family, but the report was released prematurely "due to an administrative error," officials said in a statement.
"Our detectives personally spoke with the Wallace family (Friday) night, and apologized for not notifying them prior to the release" said Capt. Billy Hayes.
The 1997 slaying remains unsolved, and under investigation, Hayes added:
"Obviously this has been a challenging case; We hope that witnesses or other people with information will come forward and give us the clues we need."
Why release the report now in any case? L.A. County's Chief Coroner Investigator Craig Harvey said a security hold on the report's release was just lifted.
The 23-page report revealed the rapper was hit by four bullets after leaving an event in March 1997, and that only the fourth - which hit his heart, lung and colon - killed him.
The rapper's family complained Friday that they were not notified of its release, and also criticized police for not closing one of L.A.'s highest-profile unsolved murders.
Both the LAPD and the FBI investigated Wallace's killing, which came just months after another rap superstar, Tupac Shakur, was gunned down in Las Vegas.
The FBI looked into whether any LAPD were involved in Wallace's shooting.
The deaths of Wallace and Shakur, both unsolved, have been the subject of rampant speculation, and are a tragic but indelible part of the genre's lore.
The one-time friends and hip-hop pioneers became rivals and instigators in a wide-ranging, often violent East Coast-West Coast rap rivalry during the 1990s.