Page 1. Assata (Shakur),. An. Autobiography. Digitalized by. RevSocialist for. SocialistStories. Page 2. Page 3. Page 4. Page 5. Page 6. Page 7. Page 8. Page 9. Assata. An Autobiography. Assata Shakur With Forewords by Angela Davis and Lennox Hinds. New Edition. In her own words, the incredible. Assata Olugbala Shakur is a former member of the Black Liberation Army, who was convicted Assata Shakur was born Joanne Deborah Byron, in Flushing, Queens, New York City, on July 16, She lived for three years with her mother.

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Assata Olugbala Shakur born JoAnne Deborah Byron ; July 16,sometimes referred to by her married surname Chesimard is a former member of the Black Liberation Armywho was convicted under New Jersey’s “aiding and abetting” statute of the first-degree murder of State Trooper Werner Foerster during a shootout on the New Jersey Turnpike in On November 2,she escaped from prison, and inshe surfaced in Cubawhere she was granted political asylum.

After she ran away from home several times, her aunt who would later act as one shakuf her lawyers, took her in. After graduation, she began using the name Assata Shakur, and briefly joined the Black Panther Party. She then joined the Black Liberation Armya loosely-knit offshoot of the Black Panthers which led an armed struggle against the US government through tactics such as robbing banks and killing police officers and drug dealers.

Between andshe was charged with several crimes and was the subject of a multi-state manhunt. Harper was wounded; Zayd was killed; Foerster was killed by Acoli. Between andshe was charged with murderattempted murderarmed robberybank robberyand kidnapping in relation to the shootout and six other incidents. She was acquitted on three of the charges and three were dismissed. Inshe was convicted of the murder of Foerster under New Jersey law the prosecution did not need to prove that Shakur fired the shots that killed either Foerster or Zayd Shakur and of seven other felonies related to the shootout, in a trial her supporters argue was unfair.

Qssata serving a life sentence for murder she escaped from prison in Shakur has lived in Cuba sincedespite US government efforts to have her returned. Johnson, and retired grandparents, Lula and Frank Hill. Shakur moved back to Queens with her mother and stepfather after elementary school, attending Parsons Junior Asata School.

However, she still assats visited her grandparents in the south. Shaur family struggled financially and argued frequently; Shakur spent little time at home. Williams, a civil rights worker, who lived in Manhattan. She said that her aunt was “very sophisticated and knew all kinds of things. She was autobuography up my alley because i [sic] was forever asking all kinds of questions. I wanted to know everything.

Shakur converted to Roman Catholicism as a child and attended the all-girls Cathedral High School[8] for six months before transferring to public high school, which she attended until she dropped out. Shakur is no longer Catholic. Shakur later wrote teachers seemed surprised when she answered a question in class, as if not expecting black people to be intelligent and engaged, and what she was taught a sugar-coated version of history that ignored the oppression suffered by people of color, especially in the United States.

In her autobiography she later wrote: The students had chained and locked the entrance to a college building to protest low numbers of black faculty and the absence of a black studies program. The married life ended within a year; they divorced in December Shakur’s marriage receives one paragraph in her memoir, she wrote that it ended over uba differing views of gender roles.

She began using the name Shkur Olugbala Shakur inrejecting Joanne Chesimard as a “slave name”. Olugbala means “savior” in Yoruba. It really had nothing to do with me.

I felt like an African woman”. According to police, Shakur knocked on the door of a guest’s room, asked “Is there a party going on here? She was booked on charges of attempted robbery, felonious assaultreckless endangermentand possession of a deadly weapon, then released on bail.

Assata: An Autobiography – Veganopolis Café

Following an August 23,bank robbery in Queens, Shakur was sought for questioning. A photograph of a asswta who was later autobiographu to be Shakur wearing thick-rimmed black glasses, with a high hairdo pulled tightly over her head, and pointing a gun, was widely displayed in banks.

On December 21,Shakur was named by the New York City Police Department as one of four suspects in a hand grenade attack that destroyed a police car and slightly injured two patrolmen in Maspeth, Queens ; a state alarm was issued three days after the attack when a witness identified Shakur and Andrew Jackson from Federal Bureau of Investigation FBI photographs.

Shakur was one of those wanted for questioning for wounding a police officer attempting to serve a traffic summons in Brooklyn on January 26, InShakur became the subject of a nationwide manhunt after the FBI alleged that she led a Black Liberation Army cell that had conducted a “series of cold-blooded murders of New York City police officers”.


But the question lies in when do people use armed struggle There were people [in the BLA] who absolutely took the position that it was just time to resist, and if black people didn’t start to fight back against police brutality and didn’t start to wage armed resistance, we would be annihilated. As of February 17,when Shakur was identified as one of four BLA members on a short trip to Chattanooga, Tennesseeshe was wanted for questioning along with Robert Vickers, Twyman Meyers, Samuel Cooper, and Paul Stewart in relation to police killings, a Queens bank robbery, and the grenade attack.

According to Cleaver and Katsiaficas, the FBI and local sssata “initiated a national search-and-destroy mission for suspected BLA sshakur, collaborating in stakeouts that were the products of intensive political repression and counterintelligence campaigns like NEWKILL”. They “attempted to tie Assata to every suspected action of the BLA involving a woman”.

On May 2,at about It is at this point, with the questioning of Acoli, that the accounts of the confrontation begin to differ see the witnesses section below. According to initial autlbiography statements, at this point one or more of the suspects began firing with semiautomatic handguns and Trooper Foerster fired four times uatobiography falling mortally wounded.

According to a New Jersey Police spokesperson, Assata Shakur was on her way to a “new hideout in Philadelphia” and “heading ultimately for Washington” and a book in the vehicle contained a list ahtobiography potential BLA targets. Assata Shakur, with gunshot wounds in both arms and a shoulder, was moved to Middlesex General Hospital under “heavy guard” and was reported to be in “serious condition”; Trooper Harper was wounded in the left shoulder, in “good” condition, and given a protective guard at the hospital.

During an interview, Assata Shakur talked about her treatment from the police and medical staff at Middlesex County Hospital. She uatobiography that the police were beating and choking her and “doing everything that they could possibly do as soon uma the doctors or nurses would go outside”. Between andin New York and New JerseyShakur was indicted ten times, resulting in seven different criminal trials.

Zssata was charged with autkbiography bank robberiesthe kidnapping of a Brooklyn heroin dealer, the attempted murder of two Queens police officers stemming from a January 23,failed ambush, and eight other felonies related to the Turnpike shootout. On the charges related to the New Jersey Autobiogdaphy shootout, New Jersey Superior Court Judge Leon Gerofsky ordered a change of venue in from Middlesex to Morris County, New Jerseysaying “it was almost impossible to obtain a jury here comprising people willing to accept the responsibility of impartiality so that defendants will be protected from transitory passion autobioggaphy prejudice.

Gagliardi denied a postponement, and the Second Circuit denied Shakur’s petition for mandamus. The prosecution’s case rested largely on the testimony of two men who had pleaded guilty to participating in the holdup. Avon White and John Rivers both of whom had already been convicted of the robbery and the manager and teller of the bank. During the trial, the defendants were escorted to a “holding pen” outside the courtroom several uha after shouting complaints and epithets at Judge Gagliardi.

Sadiki’s lawyer, Asaata Bloom, attempted to have the trial dismissed and aktobiography postponed due to new “revelations” regarding the credibility of White, a former co-defendant working for the prosecution. The retrial was delayed for one day to give the defendants more time to prepare.

Shakur personally cross-examined the witnesses, getting White to admit that he had once been in love with her; the same day, one juror who had been frequently napping during the trial was replaced with an alternate. The Turnpike shootout proceedings continued with Judge John E. Bachman in Middlesex County.

Before jury selection was complete, it was discovered that Shakur was pregnant. Due to the possibility of miscarriagethe prosecution successfully requested a mistrial for Shakur; Acoli’s trial continued.

Shakur and four others including Fred Hilton, Avon White, and Andrew Jackson were indicted in the State Supreme Court in Bronx on December 31,on charges of autoblography to shoot and kill two policemen—Michael O’Reilly and Roy Polliana, who were wounded but had since returned to duty—in an ambush in St. Albans, Queens on January 28, Shakur was indicted on May 30,on the charge of having robbed a Brooklyn autobiogrxphy and kidnapping bartender James E.

Assata Shakur – Biography – IMDb

I have decided to act as co-counsel, and to make this opening statement, not because I have any illusions about my legal abilities, but, rather, because there are things that I must say to you. I have spent many days and nights behind bars thinking about this trial, this outrage. And in my own mind, only someone who has been so intimately a victim of this madness as I have can do justice to what I have to say.

One bank employee testified that Shakur was one of the bank robbers, but three other bank employees including two tellers testified that they were uncertain.

Assata Shakur

Shakur was forcibly subdued and photographed by the FBI on the judge’s order, after having refused to cooperate, believing that the FBI would use photo manipulation ; a subsequent judge aufobiography that the manners in which the photos were obtained violated Shakur’s rights and ruled the new photos inadmissible.


Shakur was acquitted after seven shqkur of jury deliberation on January 16,[] and was immediately remanded back to New Jersey for the Turnpike trial. By the time she autobiographh retried inAcoli had already been convicted of shooting and murdering Foerster.

Following the minute opening statement by Edward J. Barone, the first assistant Middlesex County prosecutor directing the case for the stateWilliam Kunstler the chief of Shakur’s defense staff moved immediately for a mistrial, axsata the eight-count grand jury indictment “adversary proceeding solely and exclusively under the control of the prosecutor”, whom Kunstler accused of “improper prejudicial remarks”; Judge Theodore Appleby, noting the frequent defense interruptions that had characterized the previous days’ jury selection, denied the motion.

On February 23, Shakur’s attorneys filed papers asking Judge Appleby to subpoena FBI Director Clarence KelleySenator Frank Church and other federal and New Auhobiography law enforcement officials to testify about the Counter Intelligence Program, which they alleged was designed to harass and disrupt black activist organizations.

Shakur herself was called as a witness on March 15, the first witness called by the defense; she denied shooting either Harper or Foerster, and also denied handling a weapon during the incident. On that night of May 2[n]d, did you shoot, kill, execute or have anything to do with the death of Trooper Werner Dhakur Under cross-examination, Shakur was unable to explain how three magazines of ammunition and 16 live shells had gotten into her shoulder bag; she also admitted to knowing that Zayd Shakur carried a gun at times, and autobiograpyy to un a gun sticking out of Acoli’s pocket while stopping for supper at a Howard Johnson’s restaurant shortly before the shooting.

Her attorneys, in particular Lennox Hinds, were often held in contempt of courtwhich the National Conference of Black Lawyers cited as an example of systemic bias in the judicial system. Garden State Bar Ass’n Clinton Pagano, to completely shun Shakur’s defense attorneys. Judge Appleby also threatened Kunstler with dismissal and contempt of court after he delivered an October 21, speech at nearby Dhakur University that in part discussed the upcoming trial, [] but autobiograpgy ruled that Kunstler could represent Shakur.

Shakur testified that Trooper Harper shot her after she raised her arms to comply with his demand. She testified that she remained there until State Troopers dragged her onto the road.

Trooper Harper’s official reports state that after he stopped the Pontiac, he ordered Acoli to the back of the vehicle for Trooper Foerster—who had arrived on the scene—to examine his driver’s license. A total of potential jurors were questioned during the voir direwhich concluded on Autobiogfaphy One prospective juror autobiogralhy dismissed for reading Target Blue[] a book by Robert Daley, a former New York City Deputy Police Commander, which dealt in part with Shakur and had been left in the jury assembly room.

The Saga of an American Family by Alex Haley from a position on the defense counsel table easily visible to jurors. Shakur’s attorneys sought a new trial on the grounds asssta one jury member, John McGovern, had violated the jury’s sequestration order.

A key element of Shakur’s defense was medical testimony meant to demonstrate that she was shot with her hands up and that she would have been subsequently unable to fire a weapon. A neurologist testified that the median nerve in Shakur’s right arm was severed by the second bullet, making her unable to pull a trigger.

Arthur Turner Davidson, Associate Professor of Surgery at Albert Einstein College of Medicinetestified that the wounds in her upper arms, armpit and chest, and severed median nerve that autibiography paralyzed her right arm, would only shakjr been caused if both arms were raised, and that to sustain such injuries while crouching and firing a weapon as described in Trooper Harper’s testimony “would be anatomically impossible”.

Davidson based his testimony on an August 4,examination of Shakur and on X-rays taken immediately after the shootout at Middlesex General Hospital. David Spain, a pathologist from Brookdale Community Collegetestified that her bullet scars as well as X-rays supported her claim that her arms were raised, and that there was “no conceivable way” the first bullet could have hit Shakur’s clavicle if her arm was down.

Judge Appleby eventually cut off funds for any further expert defense testimony. According to Autobiographt Davisneutron activation analysis that was administered after the shootout showed no gunpowder residue on Shakur’s fingers and forensic analysis performed at the Trenton, New Jersey sssata, crime lab and the FBI crime labs in Washington, D. Shakur was convicted on all eight counts: