Uncovering the Truth About a Raid on the Black Panthers

“The call came in the early morning hours of December 4, 1969. ‘Come to the crib’ was the command. ‘The police have murdered Chairman Fred.’ I was a second-year law student at Northwestern Law School, working with a group of young lawyers, law students, and legal workers in a highly unusual law firm, founded just months before. Our firm, located in a converted sausage shop on Chicago’s north side, was grounded in principles of collectivity, and, inspired by our Black Panther Party clients, we named it the People’s Law Office. As young radicals, we devoted ourselves to aggressively fighting, in the courtrooms of Cook County, Illinois, against racial injustice and the war in Vietnam. Our clients also included a revolutionary Puerto Rican organization, the Young Lords; a radical organization of white youth called Rising Up Angry; the Weatherman faction of the Students for a Democratic Society; and, most notably, the charismatic young chairman of the Chicago chapter of the Black Panther Party, Fred Hampton. After I stopped at the law school to pull fellow student Jack Welsh out of class, we drove to the small west side Panther apartment known to us as ‘the chairman’s crib.’ The car radio was blaring that the Panthers and the police had engaged in a shootout that would have done Al Capone proud. Fred and Peoria chapter chairman Mark Clark were dead, several of the seven survivors were wounded and hospitalized, and the others were in jail. All the surviving Panthers had been charged with attempted murder. Jack and I entered the bloody, bullet-riddled apartment. The raiding officers had left it unsealed, inexplicably, after the pre-dawn attack. The plasterboard walls looked like Swiss cheese, ripped by scores of bullets from police weapons that, as we soon learned, included a machine gun, a semiautomatic rifle, and several shotguns. A large pool of blood stained the floor at the doorway where Fred’s body had been dragged after he was shot in the head, and there were fresh bloodstains on all the beds in the apartment. Shock and grief soon met with the dawning realization that the police claims of a shootout were bold-faced lies. We were looking at a murder scene. …”
Here’s How The Nation Responded When A Black Militia Group Occupied A Government Building
amazon: The Torture Machine: Racism and Police Violence in Chicago by Flint Taylor

The front page of The Sacramento Bee on the night of the protest.

About 1960s: Days of Rage

Bill Davis - 1960s: Days of Rage
This entry was posted in Black Power, Books, Chicano, Eldridge Cleaver, Huey P. Newton, SDS, Weather Underground and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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