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Monday, October 17, 2016

The Patricia Hearst Kidnapping (Part 3) / Camilla Christine Hall / The Investigative Assignment



This old San Francisco Examiner, dated Monday, May 20, 1974, is kind of interesting.  It does bring old memories back.  This particular issue is largely about the Hearst case which may explain why I kept it.  On the other hand, maybe not; the Hearst kidnapping was covered extensively for months – realize that the Examiner was controlled by the Hearst family.

Prior to May 20th, most of the SLA had been killed in a shootout in Los Angeles.  There were three remaining fugitives – Bill and Emily Harris, and Patricia Hearst.

For perspective, it’s kind of interesting to look over this old issue of the Examiner.  As I’ve said previously, I hadn’t looked at it in decades.  Some of the day to day stuff was kind of interesting.

For example, the Examiner’s daily issue, at the time, cost 15 cents.  Now, Portland’s daily is $1.50 and the Sunday issue is $3.00.

Much of this issue had to do with ‘Watergate,’ which some of you might recall.  President Nixon was still in the Whitehouse, but was under a lot of fire – which ultimately led to his resignation.

There is a full page advertisement for “Marlboro Green, Now in the Flip-top Box.”  Don’t see that sort of thing much anymore.  Maybe the ‘Marlboro Man’ dying of cancer took the wind out of their sales - moreover the public awakening I suppose.  Regarding cigarettes, its current reputation as a killer isn’t exactly new.  Sixty to seventy years back, they referred to cigarettes as ‘coffin nails.’  But, I digress.

There was one small quote in the paper which reminded me of a particular investigative assignment given to me:

“Los Angeles Coroner Thomas Noguchi identified the sixth corpse (in the LA shootout) as Camilla Christine Hall, 29.”

As a personal impression, and I got to know much about all of the SLA members, Camilla Hall seemed to have the most redeemable qualities.  It appeared that she joined this group more out of love than any sort of radical, psychotic motivation.  Camilla was a lesbian devoted to Patricia Mizmoon Soltysik who, in my opinion, had few if any redeemable qualities.

But to continue the Examiner quote:  “Near Miss Hall’s body, officials found the incinerated body of her pet cat.  When Miss Hall disappeared from her Berkeley cottage more than three months ago, she left everything except her pet.”

I’d almost forgotten this, but…

To be continued.


True Nelson


Part One

Part Two