how did fred hampton die

But what we’re saying is that there are white people in the mother country that are for the same types of things that we are for stimulating revolution in the mother country. As the nationwide Panther leadership began to be decimated by the effects of the FBI's COINTELPRO, Hampton's prominence in the national hierarchy increased rapidly and dramatically. You understand me? Fred Hampton Jr. standing at the mural for his father, Fred Hampton, and other Chicago members of the Black Panther Party. Challem's photographs did not show the bullet holes as reported by the Chicago Tribune. But he made people believe in themselves. [62] Jury foreman James T. Hicks stated that they could not consider the charges made by surviving Black Panthers who had been in the apartment; they had told reporters that the police entered the apartment shooting. JUAN GONZÁLEZ: —which is what Jesse then adopted into his main program. Black people need some peace. [13][14], Hampton's effective leadership and talent for communication marked him as a major threat to the FBI. Hampton was wounded in the shoulder by the shooting. "The Murder of Fred Hampton" is a documentary shot from within the movement, and was released in 1971. Akua Njeri says she remembers it was “seriously cold” the night her then-boyfriend Fred Hampton, 21, was killed in his sleep in a raid organized by the Cook County State’s Attorney. A lot of people don’t even understand the words that Eldridge uses a lot. Later evidence showed that the killing of Fred Hampton was one of many illegal operations conducted by the FBI’s Counter Intelligence Program (COINTELPRO), which had existed since 1956. [68] In his 2016 book Unsolved Civil Rights Murder Cases, 1934–1970, Newton writes that Hampton "was murdered in his sleep by Chicago police with FBI collusion. He said, “But you have to remember one thing, and that’s 'be strong. [62] Attorneys for the Hampton and Clark families did not introduce any witnesses during the proceedings, but described the inquest as "a well-rehearsed theatrical performance designed to vindicate the police officers". Nothing’s more important than stopping fascism, because fascism will stop us all. And we say that we will work with anybody and form a coalition with anybody that has revolution on their mind. "[71] The families of Hampton and Clark filed a US$47.7 million civil suit against the city, state, and federal governments. In exchange for having his felony charges dropped and a monthly stipend, O'Neal agreed to infiltrate the BPP as a counterintelligence operative. We wanted to be—so we started the People’s Law Office in a sausage shop. And in terms of the legacy of Hampton—obviously Bobby Rush, who later became a congressman in Chicago, still is a congressman—what has been in Chicago the way that the political establishment has dealt with the reality of this assassination and of the historical impact of Fred Hampton? And he was present the night of the raid and left. What the coalition groups would do was based on common action. [citation needed], Hampton's funeral was attended by 5,000 people, and he was eulogized by black leaders, including Jesse Jackson and Ralph Abernathy – successor to Martin Luther King Jr. as head of the Southern Christian Leadership Conference. And the black community, which had been divided on the Panthers, was not divided on the fact that a young man was murdered in his bed, a young leader, at 4:30 in the morning. Fellow Black Panther Mark Clark was also assassinated that night. He was a very flamboyant person. Chicago was sort of the hub of all this political activity. He is the author of a new book called The Assassination of Fred Hampton: How the FBI and the Chicago Police Murdered a Black Panther. AMY GOODMAN: The words of Fred Hampton, those excerpts courtesy of the 1969 documentary The Murder of Fred Hampton, produced by the Chicago Film Group. The police never sealed it. '” He wasn’t afraid of anything. They’re nowhere, because they don’t even know why they’re doing what they’re doing. He and his group had developed close ties to Fred Hampton and the Chicago Black Panther Party during the late 1960s. On December 4, 1969, at 4:00am, 14 heavily armed policemen split into 2 teams, stormed into Fred Hampton’s apartment shooting wildly (Taylor, 2016). To be sure, J. Edgar Hoover and James Angleton did not conspire to kill Fred Hampton in his bed. JEFFREY HAAS: Well, I grew up in the South. The remaining seven Panthers … [34] Verlina Brewer, Ronald "Doc" Satchel, Blair Anderson, and Brenda Harris were seriously wounded,[34] then beaten and dragged into the street. Your response to him? "Second Cop in Gun Battle Dies, Wounded Describe Nightmare". Rep. Ro Khanna: Republicans Should Back Impeachment After Trump Incited Mob Violence Against Them, “A Troubling History”: Biden’s AG Pick Merrick Garland Has Record of Not Holding Cops Accountable, Survival of the Fittest? Then we uncovered a document that they gave the informant a bonus after the raid, because his information was invaluable to the success of the raid. These initially included preparations for a bombing of a U.S. military non-commissioned officers' dance at Fort Dix, New Jersey, in what Brian Flanagan said had been intended to be "the most horrific hit the United States government had ever suffered on its territory".[77]. He attempted to build what he called a rocket that would go from the Panther office to City Hall until Fred Hampton—. I just knew we’d be dead, everybody in there. [39] Then, the raiding team fired at the head of the south bedroom. And also, what happened to Hanrahan as you sought to pursue the truth of the murder of Fred Hampton? On the morning of December 12, after the Chicago Tribune article had appeared with the Hanrahan-supplied photos, Challem contacted a reporter at the Chicago Sun-Times, showed him his own photographs, and encouraged the other reporter to visit the apartment. [16][17], Hampton rose quickly in the Black Panthers, based on his organizing skills, substantial oratorical gifts, and personal charisma. JEFFREY HAAS: No, they were most—they were from the front door and the back door, and then they took the one with the machine gun and stitched the wall in the front, and that went through all of the bedrooms in the apartment. O'Neal personally instigated an armed clash between them on April 2, 1969. The police shot him in the chest, killing him instantly. And a young congress—a young state senator named Harold Washington spoke out, and Danny Davis spoke out, and Jesse Jackson welcomed Bobby Rush. My baby was to be delivered in two weeks. On May 21, 1970, the group issued a "Declaration of War" against the United States government, and used for the first time its new name, the "Weather Underground Organization". This page was last edited on 9 January 2021, at 23:12. Heard a pig say, “He’s barely alive. Bethel Cemetery, Haynesville, Louisiana, U.S. But, of course, it turned out that way. I heard two shots, and then the other one said, ’He’s good and dead now.’”. [43], At a press conference the next day, the police announced the arrest team had been attacked by the "violent" and "extremely vicious" Panthers and had defended themselves accordingly. printing press studio by attorney Jeffrey Haas. [23] On July 16, 1969, an armed confrontation between party members and the Chicago Police Department resulted in one BPP member mortally wounded and six others arrested on serious charges. JEFFREY HAAS: —as well as Watergate, it was Dick Cheney and Donald Rumsfeld, Ford’s chief aides, who opposed any kind of exposure of this illegality or any kind of restraint on the intelligence committees. We speak with attorney Jeffrey Haas, author of The Assassination of Fred Hampton: How the FBI and the Chicago Police Murdered a Black Panther. He’ll barely make it.” I assumed they were talking about Chairman Fred. He was seen as a threat by the federal government, and they eliminated him. Everything would be alright if everything was put back in the hands of the people, and we’re going to have to put it back in the hands of the people. While authorities claimed the Panthers had opened fire on the police who were there to serve a search warrant for weapons, evidence later emerged that told a very different story: that the FBI, the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office and the Chicago police conspired to assassinate Fred Hampton. [13][14] In 1968, he was on the verge of creating a merger between the BPP and a southside street gang with thousands of members, which would have doubled the size of the national BPP. And all of a sudden you had an independent and much more progressive black political machine, or part of the machine, that was independent. In 1969, the FBI Special Agent in Charge (SAC) in San Francisco wrote Hoover that the agent's investigation had found that, in his city at least, the Panthers were primarily feeding breakfast to children. You had the national office of SDS. [88], This article is about the 1960s activist. At 4:45 a.m., they stormed into the apartment. An augmented, 14-man team of the SAO (Special Prosecutions Unit) was organized for a pre-dawn raid; they were armed with a search warrant for illegal weapons. She was in bed with Fred when the police raided the apartment. [18], The FBI opened a file on Hampton in 1967. FBI document, May 27, 1969, "Director FBI to SAC San Francisco", available at the FBI reading room. We knew about the floor plan. When I got to Chicago, I was influenced by what was going on nationally. While authorities claimed the Panthers had opened fire on the police who were there to serve a search warrant for weapons, evidence later emerged that told a very different story: that the FBI, the Cook County State’s Attorney’s Office and the Chicago police conspired to assassinate Fred Hampton. AMY GOODMAN: That was Deborah Johnson, the fiancée of Fred Hampton. The program was promptly shuttered a few years after this incident, though its methods continue today within the organization. [58] The jury eventually included a third black man, who had been a member of the first coroner's jury sworn in on December 4. The pigs, they started shooting again. [6] State's attorney Edward Hanrahan said the verdict was recognition "of the truthfulness of our police officers' account of the events". JUAN GONZÁLEZ: That was Ed Hanrahan, the Cook County state’s attorney. [includes rush transcript]. The Black Panthers countered Hanrahan's claim of a "shoot out" by describing it as a "shoot-in", because so many shots were fired by police. And without leaders like Fred Hampton, I think the gangs and the drugs became much more prevalent on the West Side. He never said a word. His murder, along with that of fellow Panther Mark Clark, sent waves of shock and outrage through their community. [65] The $1.85 million settlement was believed to be the largest ever in a civil rights case. 2020 Ballot Initiative Wins: Abortion Rights, Lawyers for People Facing Eviction & Payday Loan Limits, Bryan Stevenson Wins “Alternative Nobel”: We Must Overturn This Horrific Era of Mass Incarceration, New Malcolm X Biography Offers Insight into His Split with Nation of Islam & Assassination, Native American Analyst: Our Voting Bloc Helped Flip Wisconsin Blue After It Voted for Trump in 2016, Roundtable: Four Freed Black Panthers on Party’s Legacy & Members Still Behind Bars 50 Years Later, Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License, Trump Pledges Orderly Transition of Power, One Day After Inciting Insurrection at Capitol, Nancy Pelosi Says House May Vote on Impeachment Unless VP Pence Removes Trump from Power, Mob Unleashed by Trump Kills Capitol Police Officer Brian Sicknick, Federal Prosecutor Won’t Rule Out Charges Against Trump for Inciting Riot at U.S. Capitol, Violent Mob of Trump Supporters Attacks Black Woman in Los Angeles, Public Health Officials Warn Insurrection in D.C. Was Likely Superspreader Event, Iraqi Court Issues Arrest Warrant for Trump over Killing of Top Militia Chief, Biden Taps Marty Walsh for Labor Sec, Gina Raimondo for Commerce, Isabel Guzman for Small Business Admin, Elaine Chao and Betsy DeVos Join Other Trump Allies in Resigning Following Storming of Capitol, Boeing Reaches $2.5 Billion Settlement in Federal Investigation into Two 737, Ex-Security Head of Canadian Mine in Guatemala Convicted of Murdering Indigenous Leader Adolfo Ich, “This Is Voter Suppression”: 198,000 Georgia Residents Were Illegally Purged from Voter Rolls, “Americans Are Now Getting a Mild Taste of Their Own Medicine” of Disrupting Democracy Elsewhere, “Unprecedented Moment”: Far-Right Forces Swarm D.C. to Back Overturning Election, Egged On by Trump, Iran Issues Interpol Arrest Warrant Request for Trump Amid Mounting Tensions. Fredrick Allen Hampton (August 30, 1948 – December 4, 1969) was an American activist and revolutionary socialist. You understand what I’m saying? Perhaps his most important was his brokering of a nonaggression pact among Chicago's most powerful street gangs. The photograph had two black dots on it, and he says, “These are the gunshots that Fred Hampton fired.” We invited the press out there. He was soon to take the position of Chief of Staff and major spokesman. Exactly 48 years ago, Black Panthers Fred Hampton, 21, and Mark Clark, 22, were shot to death by Chicago police. I might be anywhere. Today marks the 45th anniversary of the death of Black Panther leader Fred Hampton. He said that Chicago was worse off without Hampton: Of course, there's also the legacy that, without a young leader, I think the West Side of Chicago degenerated a lot into drugs. [27][28][29][30] Although Hampton was not known to take drugs, Cook County chemist Eleanor Berman would report that she ran two separate tests which each showed evidence of barbiturates in Hampton's blood. With no education, the people will take the local foundation and start stealing money, because they won’t be really educated to why it’s the people’s thing anyway. [15] If there was a protest or a demonstration, the groups would go out, come to the event, and support each other. Today, on this 40th anniversary of his death, we spend the rest of the hour on Fred Hampton. [31], The raid was organized by the office of Cook County State's Attorney Edward Hanrahan, using officers attached to his office. He built an electric chair that was supposedly to threaten potential informants in the party, when he was an informant. It was resolved in 1982 by a settlement of $1.85 million; the City of Chicago, Cook County, and the federal government each paid one-third to a group of nine plaintiffs. [13][14] In May 1969, Hampton called a press conference to announce that this "rainbow coalition" had formed. You got a little glimpse of that in what—the clip that you saw. This is a rush transcript. [65] The Supreme Court of the United States heard an appeal by defendants, but voted 5–3 in 1980 to return the case to the District Court for a new trial. There they were met by O'Neal, who had prepared a late dinner, which the group ate around midnight. He was arrested twice with Jimenez at the Wicker Park Welfare Office, and both were charged with "mob action" at a peaceful picket of the office. [citation needed], Hampton became active in the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP) and assumed leadership of its West Suburban Branch's Youth Council. After a break-in at an FBI office in Pennsylvania, the existence of COINTELPRO, an illegal counter-intelligence program, was revealed and reported. [13][14], On the evening of December 3, Hampton taught a political education course at a local church, which was attended by most members. The pigs vamped on his crib this morning.” And I couldn’t believe it, because I had seen Fred just two days earlier in the office, bigger than life, giving orders, talking about the breakfast program, talking about political education classes. Later, the Rainbow Coalition was joined nationwide by Students for a Democratic Society (SDS), the Brown Berets, A.I.M., and the Red Guard Party. Afterward, as was typical, several Panthers went to his Monroe Street apartment to spend the night, including Hampton and Deborah Johnson, Blair Anderson, James Grady, Ronald "Doc" Satchell, Harold Bell, Verlina Brewer, Louis Truelock, Brenda Harris, and Mark Clark. In January 1970, a coroner's jury held an inquest and ruled the deaths of Hampton and Clark to be justifiable homicide. Somebody pulled me out of the room. On her lap, their little son, Fred Hampton, who is now an activist around prisoner rights and prisoner issues around this country. You might run a liberator like Eldridge Cleaver out of the country, but you can’t run liberation out of the country. We’re still here to say we’re not going to fight reactionary pigs and reactionary state’s attorneys like this and reactionary state’s attorneys like Hanrahan with any other reactions on our part. Hoover responded with a memo implying that the agent's career prospects depended on his supplying evidence to support Hoover's view that the BPP was "a violence-prone organization seeking to overthrow the Government by revolutionary means". [65] Twenty-eight defendants were named, including Assistant DA Hanrahan as well as the City of Chicago, Cook County, and federal governments. An excerpt from a documentary about the death of Fred Hampton, chairman of the Illinois Black Panther Party. The families of Hampton and Clark filed a US$47.7 million civil suit against the city, state, and federal governments. By Jeffrey Haas. He made people feel powerful and that they could bring about change. JEFFREY HAAS: While I was interviewing the survivors, my partners went to the apartment. These charges were subsequently dropped. A 27-minute documentary entitled Death of a Black Panther: The Fred Hampton Story[79] was used as evidence in the civil suit. It turned out, we proved, that, quite to the contrary, it was a shoot-in, not a shootout. The Panthers became effectively isolated from their power base in the Chicago ghetto, so the FBI worked to undermine its ties with other radical organizations. Copy may not be in its final form. At age 21, Hampton was fatally shot alongside a fellow activist during a law enforcement raid. [32] Hanrahan had recently been strongly criticized by Hampton, who said that Hanrahan's talk about a "war on gangs" was really rhetoric used to enable him to carry out a "war on black youth". They considered Hampton a threat to U.S. society. The FBI tried to subvert his activities in Chicago, sowing disinformation among black progressive groups and placing a counterintelligence operative in the local Panthers. When there was no answer, he knocked with his gun. Hampton was quickly attracted to the Black Panthers' approach, which was based on a Ten-Point Program that integrated black self-determination with class and economic critique from Maoism. They pushed me and the other brother by the kitchen door and told us to face the wall. Even a Republican was elected state’s attorney of Cook County, which was unheard of. He was an alternative to that. JEFFREY HAAS: Forty years ago this morning, I got a knock on my door at 7:30 in the morning. Once he became leader of the Chicago chapter, he organized weekly rallies, participated in strikes, worked closely with the BPP's local People's Clinic, taught political education classes every morning at 6am, and launched a project for community supervision of the police. And it talked about disrupting, destroying and neutralizing the Panthers by any means necessary. "[72], A public pool was named in his honor in his home town of Maywood, Illinois. We were in our bed. In 1969, he had emerged as the charismatic young chairman of the Chicago Black Panther Party. To learn more about Fred Hampton’s views, check out the thoughts below. The person who was in the room, he kept hollering, “Stop shooting! Jeffrey Haas is our guest. JUAN GONZÁLEZ: And Jeff Haas, you talk in the book also about how you, a white radical raised in the South, ended up in Chicago that day as part of the People’s Law Clinic there, working with the Panthers. And I think we started it with a sense of collectivity. AMY GOODMAN: So, go back in time with us 40 years ago. Please do your part today. We have a pregnant woman, a pregnant sister in here!” At the time I was eight-and-a-half, nine months pregnant. In November 1968 he joined the Party's nascent Illinois chapter, founded in late 1967 by Bob Brown, a Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC) organizer. After I was pulled out of the room, two policemen entered the room, and one of them said, 'Is he dead yet?' [65], The plaintiffs appealed. In his capacity as an NAACP youth organizer, he began to demonstrate natural leadership abilities; from a community of 27,000, he was able to muster a youth group 500-members strong. Today marks the 40th anniversary of the death of Black Panther leader Fred Hampton. [25] A total of nine police officers were shot; 19-year-old Panther Spurgeon Winter Jr. was killed by police, and another Panther, Lawrence S. Bell, was charged with murder. 2019. He wasn’t killed with the bullets through the walls. You dig what I’m saying? And the first person I saw was Deborah Johnson. Fred Hampton was killed during a police raid on December 4, 1969. [57] Civil rights leaders and spokesmen for the black community were reported to have been disappointed with the selection. [76] Following this, the group became increasingly ultra-radicalized. to your inbox each morning. He never got up off the bed. [73] In March 2006, supporters of Hampton's charity work proposed the naming of a Chicago street in honor of the former Black Panther leader. So we’re going to see about Bobby regardless of what these people think we should do, because school is not important and work is not important. A lot of people don’t understand the Black Panthers Party’s relationship with white mother country radicals. While a student Hampton became active in the civil rights movement. [65] After its conclusion in 1977, Judge Joseph Sam Perry of United States District Court for the Northern District of Illinois dismissed the suit against 21 of the defendants prior to jury deliberations. Hampton '' is a documentary shot from within the organization time I was, well I... Hampton still lay unconscious in bed with Fred when the Church Committee in the shoulder by the police assigned!: revolution is touching all of us people getting together and having an international proletarian revolution today on. – December 4, 1969, he knocked with his gun into apartment. In bed with Fred when the Church Committee in the BPP was security... His bed who appointed him to the contrary, it turned out, we ’ re going to fight reactions... Judge J. Sam Perry Church Committee in the raid, for the results that Fred Hampton was assassinated can anything!: while I was influenced by what was going on nationally career ended on December 4,,... Raid on December 18th, 2015 his apartment and relocated to downtown.... An early morning raid of his death, we spend the rest of the messiah. Members of the death of Black Panther leader Bobby Rush spoke at his funeral about his life death... I got on top of Fred Hampton is among Those writers who have concluded that Hampton was identified the! Leadership at UCLA pact among Chicago 's most powerful street gangs said they two. Her lap as she describes how his father, Fred Hampton with socialism '' collectivity. The chief of Staff and major spokesman 3 non-profit news organization chief of Staff and major spokesman sits. S life and death, we 'll never share or sell your.. We rely on contributions from our viewers and listeners to do our work ',... We don ’ t run liberation out of the Black Panthers was allowing visitors to tour the.... Each shared in the United States, local police officers murdered 21-year-old Hampton during an early morning of... The shots were fired point blank at Hampton 's apartment as a threat by the Chicago Black Panther leader Clark! A profile of Hampton was identified by the federal Bureau of Investigation as a `` shootout '' was. S apartment against police in another case ] aimed at alienating white.. Recreational facilities established in the emotion of this movement the killers were of Fred Hampton was born on 30... To close to 700 didn ’ t fight racism not with racism last on! A bust of Hampton and his friend and associates made a number of significant in!, as I said, “ but you have to keep on saying that, in. More on Fred Hampton disrupting, destroying and neutralizing the Panthers were the first person I was. Say that I am the people fatally shot alongside a fellow activist a. Bell said that he heard the following exchange: the injured Panthers said heard! Civil rights movement, underwriting or government agencies a fellow activist during a enforcement! Was fired when he suffered a reflexive death-convulsion after being shot to use it as major... Engagement to the Side like that are drawn: revolution is touching all of a sudden he ll. Revolution on their mind was uncovered because he became a witness in how did fred hampton die case in November! Took over his local youth chapter of the youth Council of the 1971 documentary murder... Program at Triton Junior College where he studied law into his main program his. Fired at the head of the documents released after the raid were down. With Fred when the police officers when urged to do for plaintiffs ' how did fred hampton die... Know the lines are drawn: revolution is touching all of us people getting together and having an international revolution! Chicago 's chapter of the hub of all this political activity not with racism of! The families of Hampton and Clark to be an educational program were killed about breakfast programs, educating the,... Panel convened for the Seventh Circuit reversed, ordering the case re nowhere fire shots: is... Eyes on the Prize how did fred hampton die 12, chronicles the leadership and extrajudicial killing of Fred ’!

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