On December 4, 1969, Fred Hampton, a rising member of the Black Panther Party, was murdered in Chicago while sleeping in his bed during a raid by a tactical unit of the Cook County, Illinois State's Attorney's Office. The raid was organized in conjunction with the city police department and the FBI. William Kunstler was in Chicago arguing for the defendents in the Chicago 8 Trial. He was deeply affected by Hampton's murder. It wasn't until over a decade later that Hampton's family and the city of Chicago settled in a wrongful death suit for $1.85 million. In 1990, the Chicago City Council passed a resolution declaring "Fred Hampton Day" in honor of the slain leader.
FBI Appendix on the Black Panther Party
"...the BPP advocates the use of guns and guerrilla tactics in its revolutionary program to end the oppression of black people. Residents of the black community are urged to arm themselves against the police who are consistently referred to as 'pigs' who should be killed."
Surveillance Account of a Speech Given at Orange County Community College on June 10, 1970:
"If the Black Panthers were to invade a police station and kill two police officers and make the claim that they had done so because the police were firing at them as they entered the police office to file a complaint you know what would happen to them. They'd be hanging from the same lamppost that hung a hundred years ago during the draft riots. They would never be believed. They could never be exonerated. The police in Chicago are murderers. The words I am saying are libelous if untrue and make me eligible for suit and I wish they would. The State's Attorney is a murderer, his name is BLANK BLANK. He will never be brought to justice because he killed ni**ers who don't mean anything to this society."
Surveillance Account of a Speech Given at Tulane University on July 23, 1970:
"[Kunstler] ended his lengthy discussion of the Hampton case by saying, 'Fred Hampton didn’t count because he was an outlaw and therefore willfully murdered. If I were black and engaged in any type of black liberation, I would fire that shotgun on the first knock of any policeman on that door.' He said that he could no longer advise black people not to learn to shoot and not to protect themselves."
Click on the images above to download a PDF of all the documents in this section. (7 pages)
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