The Parts Left Out Of The Patty Hearst Trial (Part 1)

Groucho Marx said during an interview with Flash magazine in 1971, “I think the only hope this country has is Nixon’s assassination.” Yet he was not subsequently arrested for threatening the life of a president. In view of the indictment against Black Panther David Hilliard for using similar rhetoric, I wrote to the San Francisco office of the Justice Department to find out the status of their case against Groucho. The response:

Dear Mr. Krassner:

Responding to your inquiry of July seventh, the United States Supreme Court has held that Title 18 U.S.C., Section 871, prohibits only “true” threats. It is one thing to say that “I (or we) will kill Richard Nixon” when you are the leader of an organization which advocates killing people and overthrowing the Government; it is quite another to utter the words which are attributed to Mr. Marx, an alleged comedian. It was the opinion of both myself and the United States Attorney in Los Angeles (where Marx’s words were alleged to have been uttered) that the latter utterance did not constitute a “true” threat.

Very truly yours,

James L. Browning, Jr.
United States Attorney

Browning was so anxious in his pursuit of justice that he successfully fought for the dismissal of charges against federal narcotics officers who had shot an innocent hippie in the back from their helicopter in Humboldt County. In 1976, I found myself sitting in a federal courtroom every day, observing Browning as he prosecuted a bank robbery case that seemed more like a perverted version of a Marx Brothers movie.

Patricia Hearst had been kidnapped by the Symbionese Liberation Army–led by Donald “Cinque” DeFreeze. She was kept in a closet, then she joined them, changed her name to Tania, adopted radical rhetoric, and robbed a bank with them. Now the philosophical paradox which has plagued the history of human consciousness–Is there or is there ain’t free will?–was finally going to be decided by a jury.

The abduction occurred in February 1974. One of the SLA’s demands was a free food program. Patty’s father, Randolph Hearst, publisher of the San Francisco Examiner, arranged for such a project in Oakland. Governor Ronald Reagan responded to the long line of people waiting for free food: “I hope they all get botulism.”

In June, I mentioned in the Berkeley Barb the non-fact that I had been brought to meet Patty underground. I wrote: “Since there is nothing of investigatory value in the interview, I will not speak with the FBI. Nor am I able to supply any information that might earn me a $50,000 reward. Tania insisted that she had not been brainwashed. My impression is that she was.”

In view of Mae Brussell’s track record with the Watergate story, I decided to devote an entire issue of The Realist to her documented analysis, “Why Was Patricia Hearst Kidnapped?”–the thrust of which was that the SLA was essentially an espionage plot orchestrated by our secret Government in order to distort the message of idealism.

A year after the kidnapping, Patty Hearst was still on the lam, and Crawdaddy, a music magazine for which I wrote a column, wanted an article on the case. I wrote an imaginary interview, and Crawdaddy published it in their April 1975 issue. An excerpt:

Q. There was a pornographic novel, Black Abductor, published a couple of years ago, which seems to parallel your case on several counts, although in the book the kidnap victim is raped

A. That didn’t happen to me. I wasn’t raped, but I have made love–of my own free will–with each and every one of my comrades. Male and female. And it’s been extremely liberating, I’ll tell you. I’ve learned more about my own sensuality in the past weeks than in my whole previous life.

Q. There’s been a rumor that you used to visit Donald DeFreeze in prison

A. That’s impossible. It’s a lie. I never did.

Q. And also that you knew [SLA member] Willie Wolfe before you were abducted?

A. That’s another lie. I mean I feel as if I’ve known him all my life, but that’s a false rumor.

Q. How have you been affected by the bisexuality?

A. I think it was an extension of sexuality. I had never been physically close to a black man like I’ve been with Cinque. I always thought nappy hair was tough–like Brillo, you know?–but it’s really soft. And so then to become intimate with another woman–I could feel my inhibitions peeling off like layers of onion skin. And I became acquainted with my clitoris. My poor little neglected clitoris, ignored all these years. What a waste.

Q. What about the evidence that DeFreeze has been an informer for the Los Angeles Police Department?

A. That was his survival game. If he were still working for the pigs, we wouldn’t be in danger now. I mean you can’t confuse somebody like Cinque with–I met the Shah of Iran once and he was absolutely charming–but he’s actually a vicious executioner. But I just hope some of those Watergate bastards go to prison, just so they get even a little taste of it and perhaps understand the lengths that a prisoner will go to–the deals and all–to escape legally, if that’s really legal.

Q. What about music? What have you been listening to?

A. Well, we only have a radio here. At a previous safe-house there was a stereo, but we didn’t have a variety of records. Joy of Cooking, we played them a lot. Pink Floyd, too. And there’s a group called The Last Poets, and there’s one cut on their album where they give their interpretation of all the symbolism on a dollar bill, and we just sat around, wiped out on some really excellent grass, looking at a dollar bill while they were reciting that. It’s very powerful. I remember how I used to think, when I was a little girl, that real money was just official play money.

Q. I feel silly asking this, but have you been brainwashed?

A. No, I’ve been coerced, obviously, at the beginning, but I haven’t been brainwashed. You have to understand what it’s been like from my point of view. Instant introspection. The moment I was taken away, underneath the tremendous fright I was still aware that it was because I was the daughter of a wealthy family whose comfort depends on the suffering of others. I’ve always been vaguely aware of that but, you know, you try to repress that kind of thing so you can go on living comfortably yourself . . .

Q. Did your family know you were getting stoned?

A. Oh, sure. Listen, there was almost a pound of marijuana at our apartment when I, you know, went on this little involuntary vacation trip, but I’ll bet my father and the FBI made some kind of agreement to keep it quiet. They couldn’t very well pretend that Steven smoked and I didn’t.

Q. You were real close to Steven Weed. How do you view that relationship now?

A. It seems like a previous incarnation. He had been my math teacher at Crystal Springs, but I was the aggressive one–in fact, that made me have sort of a vested interest in him–like he was an emotional investment, you know? And there was something, an adolescent romantic fantasy, about making out with your tutor. You got status for being independent.

But we ended up leading a very middle-class life in Berkeley. Listening to records, dinner parties–always with his friends, couples–and shopping for antiques, that was fun. But it was like a couple of children playing house, with my father helping out–with an MG here and a $1500 Persian rug there–he was saving that for a wedding present. God!

Sex was okay with us, but not really anything passionate. The only affection I got was foreplay. It was always a means to an end. It was always functional . . .

Q. You said on one of the communiqus that the FBI wants you dead. Why is that?

A. Because I know too much, obviously. The FBI, and also my father’s corporation advisors. I remember the way I used to hate hippies–who were in my own age bracket. I had to justify that hatred by bringing in the puritan ethic. Hippies were unproductive, right?

Anybody who cooperates with the FBI is signing their own death warrant. And it’s the same with the pig corporate structure. Their whole existence is devoted to perverting innocent children into consumers.

Why do you think my mother wanted me to go to Stanford instead of Berkeley even though she’s a goddam regent for the University? What kind of hypocrisy is that? She helps control a school that’s not good enough for her own daughter to go to?

Well, I’m a hippie now. I’m a white nigger now.

Q. What exactly is it that you know too much about?

A. Well, that my whole kidnapping was scripted by the Government . . .


Earth News Service had called the FBI in San Francisco to find out why they didn’t investigate when I originally announced in the Barb that I had met with Patty Hearst in captivity. An agent checked the files and found a notation that I had also announced I would never cooperate with the FBI, so they didn’t bother. However, a week after Crawdaddy came out, a pair of FBI agents from the Santa Cruz office visited me in Watsonville, wanting to talk about the interview.

“I’m sorry, but I have nothing to tell you.”

They repeated their request, still friendly and low-key.

“Everything I had to say about that has already been published,” I explained. “There’s nothing further to discuss.”

They tried to peer in my window.

“Patty isn’t here, is she?”

“If you get a search warrant, I’ll let you look.”

In the middle of a Doonesbury strip, Garry Trudeau spelled out the word Canaan, which was where a friend of his lived, but federal authorities were convinced it was really a reference to Patty Hearst’s supposed hideout in Pennsylvania. William F. Buckley wrote that Patty should be sacrificed “in the name of Christ.” And Catherine Hearst said that she would rather her daughter be dead than join the Communists. She also commented that if only Clark Gable had been at the apartment in Berkeley instead of Steven Weed, then Patty would never have been kidnapped. Probably true.


Patty Hearst was finally captured after eighteen months. Although her own cousin, Will, said that he would not have recognized her, the arresting officer immediately said, “Patty, what are you doing here?” She was so surprised that she peed in her pants, an accident acknowledged in the Chronicle, but not in the Examiner. She was permitted to change in the bathroom.

The FBI inventory did not include “pants, wet, one pair,” but there was on their list a two-foot marijuana plant–as compared with almost a pound of grass not reported by the FBI that was found at the apartment from which she had originally been kidnapped. There was also a bottle of Gallo wine in the SLA safe-house, not exactly a loyal gesture to the United Farm Workers whom they purported to support. And there was an unidentified “rock” found in Patty’s purse.

A KGO newscaster reported breathlessly: “Patti Page has been captured!”


I had a lunch appointment with Will Hearst, assistant to the editor at the Examiner and grandson of Citizen Kane’s prototype, William Randolph Hearst. Although Will claimed that his status as Patty’s favorite cousin was a media creation, he was the very first one she requested to see after her arrest. Now he walked into the lobby.

“It’s a bad day,” he told me. “San Simeon has been bombed.”

“Well, at least I have an alibi.”

We postponed the lunch, and on the way home I stopped at the federal court building, where Patty’s trial was in a preliminary stage. Originally, she was going to be defended by the radical team of Vincent Hallinan and his son, Kayo. The elder Hallinan was in Honolulu when the FBI captured Patty, and he assigned Kayo to visit her in jail. Although as Tania she had called Vincent Hallinan a “clown” in a taped communiqu, now, as Patty, she said of Kayo, “He’s good. Like, I really trust him politically and personally, and I can tell him just about anything I want and he’s cool.” It was, however, a lawyer-client relationship that would not be permitted to mature.

When Patty described her physical reaction to having her blindfold removed in captivity, Kayo recognized a similarity to reactions to LSD. Patty agreed there had been something reminiscent of her acid trips with Steven Weed in the old Hearst mansion. Besides, there was circumstantial evidence that the SLA could have dosed her with LSD. The brother of SLA member Mizmoon reported that she and fellow member Camilla Hall had taken acid; in TV Guide, reporter Marilyn Baker claimed that drugs had been found at the SLA safe-house in Concord; and on the very first taped communiqu, Patty herself had said, “I caught a cold, but they’re giving me pills for it and stuff.”

Her defense was going to be involuntary intoxication, a side effect of which is amnesia. So Patty would neither have to snitch on others nor invoke the Fifth Amendment for her own protection. In response to any questions about that missing chunk of her life, she was simply going to assert, “I have no recollection.” The Hallinans instructed her not to talk to anybody–especially psychiatrists–about that period.

But her uncle, William Randolph Hearst, Jr., editor-in-chief of the Hearst newspaper chain, flew in from the East Coast to warn his family that the entire corporate image of the Hearst empire was at stake and they’d better hire an establishment attorney–fast. Enter F. Lee Bailey. He had defended a serial killer, the Boston Strangler, and a war criminal, Captain Harold Medina from the My Lai massacre, but he said he would not defend Patty Hearst if she were a revolutionary. You’ve gotta have standards.

Bailey and his partner, Albert Johnson, visited with Patty for a couple of hours at San Mateo County Jail in order to encourage her to tell the psychiatrists everything and not say, “I have no recollection.” She could trust these doctors, they assured her, and nothing she said could be used against her in any way. Now her defense would be based on the Stockholm Hostage Syndrome. Patty had been kidnapped again.

Brainwashing does exist. Built into the process is the certainty that one has not been brainwashed. Patty’s obedience to her defense team paralleled her obedience to the SLA. The survival syndrome had simply changed hands. F. Lee Bailey was Cinque in whiteface. Instead of a machine-gun, he owned a helicopter company–Enstrom, an anagram for Monster. Instead of taping underground communiqus, he held press conferences. It was all show biz.

There had been a rumor that Patty was pregnant by Cinque. Indeed, one of the first questions that Randolph Hearst asked when he met sports figure Jack Scott–who had supposedly seen Patty on the lam–was to ascertain if that rumor was true. I wrote in the Berkeley Barb: “Now, with their daughter on trial, the Hearsts have hired a lawyer who wears pancake make-up to press conferences, the better to transform a racist fear into a Caucasian alibi.”

I received this letter by certified mail:

Dear Sir:

You undoubtedly did not realize that the name “Pan-Cake Make-Up” is the registered trademark (U.S. Patent Office No. 350,402) of Max Factor & Co., and is not a synonym for cake make-up. The correct usage is “Pan-Cake Make-Up,” capitalized and written in just that manner, or, under circumstances such as these, where you obviously did not intend to mention a particular brand, simply cake make-up.

We are sure that you are aware of the legal importance of protecting a trademark and trust that you will use ours properly in any future reference to our product, or, in the alternative, will use the proper generic term rather than our brand name. So that our records will be complete, we would appreciate an acknowledgment of this letter.

Very truly yours,
Max Factor & Co.
D. James Pekin Corporate Counsel

In response, I explained that there had been a slight misunderstanding–what F. Lee Bailey had been wearing to all those press conferences was actually Aunt Jemima Pancake Mix–and I hoped that cleared up the matter.


It was not an easy task for Stephen Cook to report about the trial of his boss’ daughter, what with the boss sitting right there in the front row of the courtroom to oversee him, but he didn’t spare his employer from embarrassing testimony, and, to the Examiner’s credit, he was not censored. However, Dick Alexander, who was writing feature material on the trial for the Examiner, had his copy changed so drastically that he requested his byline be dropped.

On the first day of the trial, he wore a tie with the legendary Fuck You emblazoning the design. Randolph Hearst chastised him for this, but Alexander continued to wear the tie. Perhaps it reminded Hearst of the time Patty screamed, “Fuck you, Daddy!” in his office. A syndicated cartoon by Lichty–with the caption, “I don’t know whether she was brainwashed, but she should certainly have her mouth washed out with soap!”–appeared only in the first edition of the Examiner.

The trial was also grist for the TV entertainment mill. On the Merv Griffin show, the audience voted 70-30 that Patty was guilty as charged. On Maude, the British maid studying for her citizenship test had to answer the question, “Who said, ‘Give me liberty or give me death’?” She was given a hint that the initials were P.H. She did not guess Patrick Henry, but Patty Hearst. And Johnny Carson in his opening monologue wondered whether F. Lee Bailey would get Lockheed off “for kidnapping our money.”

Soap-opera actress Ruth Warrick, who starred in Citizen Kane, revealed, “My name was not printed in any Hearst paper for five years after that film was released. I could be the star of a movie and my name couldn’t even be mentioned in the ads in Hearst papers.”

Patty had never seen Citizen Kane, particularly not while on the run, because it would’ve been too embarrassing to be caught there. Throughout her trial, there was a screen set up in the court, but instead of Orson Welles, over and over and over again, like some recurring nightmare, Patty would view footage of herself helping to rob the Hibernia Bank. One witness at the bank had been convinced that it was merely an episode for Streets of San Francisco and that Patty was just an actress.

Nancy Faber of People magazine became the unofficial courtroom fashion advisor. If you wanted to find out exactly what color Patty’s pantsuit was, Faber would know that it was Iranian Rust. But while Patty was wearing light-brown eye shadow, or pearl-gray nail polish to indicate that she didn’t have the hands of a criminal, the San Quentin Six were appearing before their jury each day in shackles and leg irons. Shana Alexander was the only journalist who skipped a day at the Patty Hearst trial to attend the San Quentin Six trial.

A rhetorical question had been asked of the press: “How can you justify extensive coverage of Patty Hearst and say little, if anything, about the San Quentin Six, in which the state has admitted not having any real evidence?” KQED interviewed media folks, who rationalized that they were only giving the public what it wanted. But when you had a TV program like Mowgli’s Brothers, an animated cartoon based on Rudyard Kipling’s Jungle Books, in which an abandoned baby is adopted by a couple of compassionate wolves who talk to him–and right there in the middle there’s a commercial with Tony the Tiger telling young viewers that they should eat Frosted Flakes–was that not a form of brainwashing? The San Quentin Six were to Patty Hearst as ginseng root was to Frosted Flakes.

John Lester of KPIX became the media advisor for the Hearst family when Patty was abducted. He warned Randolph Hearst that when he stepped through his front door he would be appearing on international television and therefore it would be important not to pick his nose. So, just before he opened the door, Hearst would call out, “Hey, Johnlook!” Lester would look and Hearst would proceed to stick his index finger up his right nostril, eliciting a horrified laugh from his media advisor. Then Hearst would walk out with black-dressed Catherine and mournfully greet the press. On the inside of the door, there was a sign that warned, “Don’t Pick Your Nose!”

Patty’s parents were there on view when the jury was selected, although the press was excluded. But how could the judge be sure that Randolph Hearst wouldn’t leak the story to his own paper? And so they sat in the front row of the courtroom each day, that protective image of media royalty continuing to lurk behind Princess Patty in the subconscious memory of the jurors.

What was really on trial was the royal nuclear family–floor sample of a consumer unit that also serves as the original source of authority. If Patty had not “belonged” to her parents, why would anybody want to kidnap her? And if the princess had lived her pre-kidnap life inside the safety of the castle, then how could any nasty old SLA get her?

The message of this trial was clear: Destroy the seeds of rebellion in your children or we shall have it done for you. In the courtroom, spectators with binoculars focused on Patty and her parents, who were busy pretending that they weren’t being watched for reactions. They had become a captive audience by being forced to listen in public to a tape-recorded communiqu from their princess, abdicating her right to the throne:

Mom, Dad, I would like to comment on your efforts to supposedly secure my safety. The [food] giveaway was a sham . . . You were playing games–stalling for time–which the FBI was using in their attempts to assassinate me and the SLA elements which guarded me . . .

I have been given the choice of, one, being released in a safe area or, two, joining the forces of the Symbionese Liberation Army . . . I have chosen to stay and fight . . .

I want you to tell the people the truth. Tell them how the law-and-order programs are just a means to remove so-called violent–meaning aware–individuals from the community in order to facilitate the controlled removal of unneeded labor forces in this country, in the same way that Hitler controlled the removal of the Jews from Germany.

I should have known that if you and the rest of the corporate state were willing to do this to millions of people to maintain power and to serve your needs, you would also kill me if necessary to serve those same needs. How long will it take before white people in this country understand that whatever happens to a black child happens sooner or later to a white child? How long will it be before we all understand that we must fight for our freedom?

At the end of the tape, Donald “Cinque” DeFreeze came on with a triple death threat, especially to one Colston Westbrook, whom he accused of being “a government agent now working for military intelligence while giving assistance to the FBI.” This communiqu was originally sent to San Francisco radio station KSAN. News director David McQueen checked with a Justice Department source, who confirmed Westbrook’s employment by the CIA.

Conspiracy researcher Mae Brussell traced his activities from 1962, when he was CIA advisor to the South Korean CIA, through 1969, when he provided logistical support in Vietnam for the CIA’s Phoenix program. His job was the indoctrination of assassination and terrorist cadres. After seven years in Asia, he was brought home in 1970, along with the war, and assigned to run the Black Cultural Association at Vacaville Prison, where he became the control officer for DeFreeze, who had worked as a police informer from 1967 to 1969 for the Public Disorder Intelligence Unit of the Los Angeles Police Department.

If DeFreeze was a double agent, then the SLA was a Frankenstein monster, turning against its creator by becoming in reality what had been orchestrated only as a media image. When he finked on his keepers, he signed the death warrant of the SLA. They were burned alive in a Los Angeles safe-house during a shootout with police. When Cinque’s charred remains were sent to his family in Cleveland, they couldn’t help but notice that he had been decapitated. It was as if the CIA had said, literally, “Bring me the head of Donald DeFreeze!”

Consider the revelations of Wayne Lewis in August 1975. He claimed to have been an undercover agent for the FBI, a fact verified by FBI director Clarence Kelley. Surfacing at a press conference in Los Angeles, Lewis spewed forth a veritable conveyor belt of conspiratorial charges: that DeFreeze was an FBI informer; that he was killed not by the SWAT team but by an FBI agent because he had become “uncontrollable;” that the FBI then wanted Lewis to infiltrate the SLA; that the FBI had undercover agents in other underground guerrilla groups; that the FBI knew where Patty Hearst was but let her remain free so it could build up its files of potential subversives.

At one point, the FBI declared itself to have made 27,000 checks into the whereabouts of Patty Hearst. It was simultaneously proclaimed by the FDA that there were 25,000 brands of laxative on the market. That meant one catharsis for each FBI investigation, with a couple of thousand potential loose shits remaining to smear across “No Left Turn” signs. Patty had become a vehicle for repressive action on the right and for wishful thinking on the left.


A three-month-old baby, whose mother wanted to expose her to the process of justice, was being breast-fed in the back of the courtroom while Patty Hearst testified that she had been raped in a closet by the lover she had once described as “the gentlest, most beautiful man I’ve ever known.”

Now, prosecutor James Browning was cross-examining her.

“Did you, in fact, have a strong feeling for Willie Wolfe?”

“In a way, yes.””As a matter of fact, were you in love with him?”


A little later, he asked if it had been “forcible rape.”

“Excuse me?”

“Did you struggle or submit?”

“I didn’t resist. I was afraid.”

Browning walked into the trap: “I thought you said you had strong feelings for him?”

“I did,” Patty replied triumphantly. “I couldn’t stand him.”

It sure seemed fake. And yet, there was this letter to the Berkeley Barb:

Only a woman knows that the sex act, no matter how gentle, becomes rape if she is an unwilling partner. Her soul, as well as her body, is scarred. The gentleness of Willie Wolfe does not preclude rape. Rape, in this instance, was dependent upon Patricia Hearst’s state of mind, not Willie Wolfe’s. We must all remember that only Patty knows what she felt; and if we refuse to believe her, there can be no justice.

Patty also said that her intercourse with Cinque was “without affection.”

The SLA women insisted they were not “mindless cunts enslaved by big black penises.”

“You need seven inches,” a reporter was explaining, “for a byline in Newsweek.”

“Patty Frigid After DeFreeze,” stated a headline that was set in type but not used in the Daily Californian, the Berkeley campus newspaper.

“Hearst Blows Weed,” stated a later headline that was used in the Daily Californian.

“Is the Government saying,” objected Bailey, “that everyone who smokes grass is a bank robber?”

Oh, that’s right, this was a bank-robbery trial, wasn’t it?

“Were you acting the part of a bank robber?” Browning asked Patty.

“I was doing exactly what I had to do. I just wanted to get out of that bank. I was just supposed to be in there to get my picture taken mostly.”

Ulysses Hall testified that after the robbery, he managed to speak on the phone with his former prison mate, Cinque, who told him that the SLA members didn’t trust Patty’s decision to join them. Conversely, she didn’t trust their offer of a “choice,” since they all realized she’d be able to identify them if she went free–and so they made her prove herself by “fronting her off” at the bank with Cinque’s gun pointed at her head. Out of the closet, into the bank!

Patty testified that Patricia Soltysik kicked her because she wasn’t enthusiastic enough at a dress rehearsal, and Cinque warned her that if she messed up in any way, she’d be killed. Before the trial, prosecutor Browning had admitted that it was “clear from the photographs she may have been acting under duress.” And during the trial, Bailey, with only fifteen minutes to go before weekend recess, brought out the government’s suppression of photos showing Camilla Hall also pointing her gun at Patty in the bank.

Moreover, in a scene right out of Blow-Up or an aspirin commercial, a “scientific laboratory” had used a digital computer “to filter out the grain without changing the content,” then scanned the photos with a laser beam, all to indicate that Patty had opened her mouth in surprise and recoiled in horror at the firing of shots in the bank, and that it was merely a shadow that made her look as if she were smiling during the robbery, although Cinque had given her strict orders to smile whenever she met anyone who was supposed to know she was Tania, because the original image of Patty, the one that was disseminated around the world, showed her smiling broadly.

No wonder KQED’s courtroom artist Rosalie Ritz was approached by a promoter willing to pay her to design a Patty doll with a complete change of clothes so it could be turned into a Tania doll.

It did not come out in the testimony of Louis “Jolly” West that he once killed an elephant with an overdose of LSD–which UPI’s Don Thackrey called “pachydermicide”–nor that Dr. West once spent eight straight hours in John Lilly’s sensory deprivation tank. According to Kayo Hallinan, Patty “hated” West because she was aware of the fascistic implications of his proposed UCLA Center for the Study and Reduction of Violence, which would practice what it preached againstviolence–in the form of electrode implantation and aversion therapy. Obviously, then, some kind of coercive persuasion must have been used to get her to talk to him. Perhaps she had been reduced to a state of infantile helplessness–once again.

A letter from a prisoner in the San Mateo County Jail: “I was coming out of the doctor’s office when I saw Tania being taken out the front door. The guards had cleared the hallways of all prisoners and it was by mistake that I was let out at that time by the jail nurse. Tania was taken out by one female and three males. When I called to her I was dragged out of the hallway. Our comrade was exhausted and frightened, lethargic in her movements and appeared drugged. While I was in the doctor’s office, I had noticed a 3-by-5 manila envelope–the type used to hold medications given to prisoners–which had written on it, ‘Hearst.’ There is little doubt she is being drugged.”

Associated Press reported that, “a source close to the specialists conducting the examination . . . said that the dosages of ‘anti-psychotic drugs’ listed on Miss Hearst’s medical report would themselves cause lethargy and disorientation.” Would she eventually emerge from the psychiatric kidnapping only to proclaim, as she had previously done on an SLA communiqu, “I have not been brainwashed, drugged, tortured, or hypnotized in any way”?

F. Lee Bailey put Patty on the witness stand. He asked her what Cinque had done on one occasion to show his disapproval.

“He pinched me.”


“My breasts”pause–“and down–”

“Your private parts as well?”


Then Browning cross-examined Patty:

“Did he pinch one or both of your breasts?”

“I really don’t remember.”

“Was it under your clothing?”


“In both places?”

“Pardon me, I don’t think that the other was under my clothing.”

“All right, your breasts he pinched by touching your skin. The pubic area, he did not touch your skin. Is that true?”

“That’s right.”

Good Lord, this was supposed to be the Trial of the Century, and the government was trying to find out whether Cinque got bare tit.

Bailey fought unsuccessfully to have Patty testify about the bombing of the Hearst castle, so that the jury would know she was still, indirectly, afraid of SLA members Bill and Emily Harris. But, once more, Patty tricked Browning during cross-examination. He was asking why she hadn’t taken advantage of opportunities to phone for help.

“It wasn’t possible for me to call,” she explained, “because I couldn’t do it, and I was afraid of the FBI.”

Browning was certainly not going to disagree with Bailey’s contention that Patty suffered from “a misperception about the viciousness of the FBI,” so he asked Patty if it had occurred to her to turn the Harrises in.

“I was afraid. They aren’t the only people like that running around . . . There were many others who could’ve picked up right where they left off.”

Browning wondered if they really had such “power over your life.”

“They did. It’s happening right now.”

“Has somebody been killed?”

Suddenly, Patty switched from her usual monotone to a hurried delineation of the latest terrorist acts, threats, and broken promises, including this:

“San Simeon was bombed. My parents received a communiqu demanding $250,000–”

Your Honor, please, the witness is leading the prosecutor. But it was too late. The jury had heard her.

Browning countered weakly: “Was anybody killed?”


[Read the rest in Part 2]

3 Comments on "The Parts Left Out Of The Patty Hearst Trial (Part 1)"

  1. BuzzCoastin | Jan 31, 2013 at 10:54 pm |

    black radical seizes media heiress & brainwashes her
    hope & change, the prequel
    still run by the media
    for the media bosses

    we’re all media hostages too
    which demands a soul’s ransom

  2. f_galton | Feb 2, 2013 at 9:17 pm |

    I thought Paul Krassner was dead.

  3. gingerland62 | May 7, 2014 at 1:53 am |

    Rich girl goes revolutionary, gets busted and daddy bails her out.

Comments are closed.