Monday, May 11, 2015
Leonard Peltier Murdered FBI Agents John L. Coler and Ronald A Williams / Let’s Just Get it Straight
I really couldn’t let this one slide-by.
“Peltier’s Son Joins Fight for Father’s Freedom” (The Oregonian 5/10/15). Article by Dana Tims.
Before I criticize, I always research the writer. I want to make sure that he is not twenty-one and recently graduated from journalism school. I wouldn’t want to rain on a young person’s parade. However, Mr. Tims looks old enough to know better.
Leonard Peltier’s son, Chauncey, is apparently renewing the ‘fight’ to free his father, the murderous, unrepentant Leonard Peltier. OK, sons often overlook the sins of their fathers, and even sometimes put a glossy spin on their fathers’ past escapades. You know ‘boys will be boys’ or ‘it was just the times’ or ‘his actions were justified due to some murky wrong or cause.’ However, that doesn’t warrant Mr. Tims’ softball approach to writing about the murders of two FBI Agents (John L. Coler and Ronald A. Williams) on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation in South Dakota (1975).
Tims describes the murders as the result of a “shootout,” as if it was something like the ‘shootout at the OK Corral.’ Well, let’s get this straight. The FBI Agents were outgunned, with their revolvers, and were ambushed by Peltier et al who were armed with rifles, located a considerable distance away.
The ‘shootout:’ Coler and Williams fired a grand total of five rounds. However, the Agents’ car had a total of 125 bullet holes. This did not, of course, account for the incoming rounds that missed the car or shattered windows in the car. Agent Coler was hit in the arm which reportedly nearly severed it. Williams, also wounded, attempted to stem the blood flow from Coler’s arm by wrapping his own shirt around the wound.
Coler, probably near death, and Williams wounded were approached by Peltier and friends. The Agents were executed at close range, two bullets to Coler’s head, and one bullet to Williams’ head. Williams had a defensive wound to his hand which he held in front of his face. The bullet went through his hand into his head.
9-22-91, Peltier admitted, on the television program “60 Minutes,” that he shot at the Agents.
In an elaborate trial, with five defense attorneys, Peltier was convicted on two counts of ‘First Degree Murder.’ Substantial evidence was presented in court connecting him to the principal murder weapon, the .223 rifle. Peltier has entered several appeals. All have been denied by various courts. The U.S. Supreme Court has on two occasions refused to hear his appeals.
Peltier now holds hope that he will be pardoned by President Obama. Many experts consider this a realistic possibility. Peltier, surprisingly in my opinion, has received the backing of several celebrities. I will talk more about this.
To be continued…