Documentary about the death of Fred Hampton, chairman of the Illinois Black Panther Party. The film started out as a simple portrait of Hampton and features lots of footage of his powerful speeches. However, in 1969, Hampton was murdered in his bed at the Panther headquarters by the Chicago police. The event was extremely controversial as the police and the Black Panthers told drastically different versions of the events. The film became instrumental in proving the Panthers' story that the police broke in to headquarters without warning and killed Hampton without resistance.
0:00Copy video clip URL About an 8 minute overlap from Reel One. State’s Attorney Edward V. Hanrahan speaks against the Panthers. A TV Report based on Hanrahan’s report.
1:04Copy video clip URL People line up to tour Hampton’s apartment. Attorney Skip Andrew says, “What they didn’t understand… is you can’t kill Chairman Fred. Anyone who would try to kill him is and will ever be an enemy of the people… And any person who would do that could not be considered a person, but a pig.”
2:09Copy video clip URL Hampton in his coffin. Bobby Seale talks to a crowd: “You have to make up your own minds what’s true, whether it was murder.”
2:24Copy video clip URL A police officer walks the TV news through a mock-up of the apartment. The police give their side of the story, taking time with the entrance. Hanrahan says police announced office, and shotgun fire from inside immediately commenced. Hanrahan says the only response to the police officers was the firing of a shotgun from inside the apartment. A police officer walks through and explains being shot at by a woman on the bed. Brenda Harris, who supposedly fired a shot at the officer, says she didn’t. Officer James Davis talks about firing at and killing one of the Panthers.
7:44Copy video clip URL The Panthers show there’s no evidence of any firing on behalf of the Panthers. Hanrahan insists the police were fired on. “We say this is nothing more than a fascist lie, a justified murder.” The Panthers show that there are no bulletholes to show any shots being fired from inside. Panthers attorney Andrew shows the panel of the Panthers door. Defense says the panel is probably fake. Andrews walks camera crew through apartment showing evidence at 10:54AM the day of the raid.
9:04Copy video clip URL An attorney talks about evidence that Officer Davis was lying. More police officers re-enact entering the apartment from behind.
10:44Copy video clip URL Hanrahan pledges his belief in the consistency of a police report delivered to the Chicago Tribune, containing completely false evidence: A photo with a bullet hole circled. The bullethole was actually a nail. “We have not characterized the conditions [the photos] portray, just that they are representative of what was there.” Reporters question Hanrahan who says, “I make no evaluation of the photos, other than to say that they portray conditions inside the apartment at the time that they were taken.”
14:14Copy video clip URL Bobby Seale claims that there was never any denial that there were weapons in the apartment. “Hanrahan is a madman.”
14:44Copy video clip URL Hanrahan answers as to why the police force didn’t use teargas to empty the building for the search. The Panthers claim Hanrahan came “with murder on the mind.”
15:24Copy video clip URL Deborah Johnson and Fred Jr. Deborah talks about waking up to the siege while in bed with Hampton. She says Hampton never said a word, never got out of the bed. At the time, Deborah was pregnant with Fred Jr., but police kept firing anyway. She said she heard a policeman say “He’s barely alive, he’ll barely make it.” The police shoot some more, then say “He’s good and dead now.” A picture of police officers smiling after the raid.
17:49Copy video clip URL Hanrahan answers to “false statements” made by the Black Panthers, who had no knowledge of the event. Doc Satchell, who was in the apartment, talks about the event. The police talk about firing a huge number of shots into the apartment. Doc Satchell says he was shot four times, and shows his scars. Hanrahan says “The political consequences can take care of themselves. Of course I don’t plan to resign.”
22:54Copy video clip URL Seale talks about evidence changing every time the Panthers find a new piece of evidence against the police story. Seale suggests the only place he could find out what actually happened would be the apartment.
23:30Copy video clip URL Maywood Councilman and the Cook County Commissioner both say that the search was a subterfuge for murder. President of the Afro-American Police Association says he is personally convinced it was murder. Skip Andrews says it was an assassination and that Seale may be next. Bobby Seale says that he believes the police are out to murder him just as they murdered Fred Hampton and just as they’ll murder anyone who’s black. Seale says he plans to continue working for the people.
26:34Copy video clip URL Andrews reads results of the Grand Jury report intercut with misleading interviews by the police. The Grand Jury Report concludes that the police officers must be falsifying their accounts. In spite of conclusions, the jury doesn’t see enough evidence for probable cause of conviction of murder.
32:34Copy video clip URL Hampton speaks over text about “paying the price of peace” and not being afraid of death. “I’ve been gone for a little while, at least my body’s been gone for a little while. But I’m back now, and I believe I’m back to stay… I believe that I’m going to be able to die high off the people. I believe that I will be able to die in the international proletarian revolutionary struggle. Why don’t you live for the people? Why don’t you struggle for the people? Why don’t you die for the people?”
34:54Copy video clip URL End of tape.