ONTD Political

Aging Fugitive Joanne Chesimard Is First Woman on Most Wanted Terrorists List

11:48 am - 05/03/2013

Joanne Chesimard, a left-wing militant who shot a state trooper on the New Jersey Turnpike 40 years ago today, has become the first woman on the FBI's list of Most Wanted Terrorists.

"Joanne Chesimard is a domestic terrorist who murdered a law enforcement officer execution-style," said Aaron Ford, special agent in charge of the FBI's Newark Division.

Chesimard, a fugitive living in Cuba under the name Assata Shakur, was a member of the Black Liberation Army in 1973 when she shot and killed Trooper Werner Foerster during a traffic stop.

According to a state police account, "Foerster was severely wounded in his right arm and abdomen and then executed with his own service weapon on the roadside. Chesimard's jammed handgun was found at Foerster's side."

Chesimard, now 65, was convicted in 1977. Two years later she escaped from the prison where she was serving a life sentence, spent time in a series of safe houses in New Jersey and Pennsylvania and fled in 1984 to Cuba, where New Jersey State Police Col. Rick Fuentes said she "flaunts her freedom."

"To this day from her safe haven in Cuba Chesimard has been given a pulpit to preach and profess, stirring supporters and groups to mobilize against the United States by any means necessary," Fuentes said.

The reward for her capture and safe return has been doubled to $2 million.

"We want her to come back here and face justice and serve out her sentence," New Jersey Attorney General Jeffrey Chiesa said.

Chesimard is also known as the godmother of slain rapper Tupac Shakur.

The FBI said Chesimard represents a "supreme terror" to the United States, though she is associated with no new threat. Her supporters believe she was a target of law enforcement's campaign against the Black Panther movement in the 1960s and 1970s.

"I was convicted by—I don't even want to call it a trial, it was lynching, by an all-white jury," Chesimard told BET in 2001. "I had nothing but contempt for the system of justice under which I was tried."

The rapper Common told her story in "A Song for Assata," which caused a stir after Michelle Obama invited him to a White House poetry slam two years ago. The piece contains the lyrics "Your power and pride is beautiful."

tabaqui 3rd-May-2013 04:41 pm (UTC)
IF she actually murdered someone then yes, she should serve time, but calling her a 'supreme terror' is really pretty...stupid. And I've never heard her name or story connected with any 'supporters or groups' that have 'mobilized' against the US.

Meh. This rather reeks of what happened to Leonard Peltier.
clevermanka 3rd-May-2013 05:21 pm (UTC)
A-yep. MTE.
moonshaz 3rd-May-2013 05:25 pm (UTC)
Yes, this.
zinnia_rose 3rd-May-2013 07:14 pm (UTC)
This. She shouldn't get away with murder, but a terrorist threat? Nope.
fluteaphrael 5th-May-2013 03:04 am (UTC)
Exactly. It looks and feels like the proverbial witch hunt. I mean seriously? With all the people committing crimes right now this is who they choose to make a stink about? Why now?
tabaqui 5th-May-2013 03:16 am (UTC)
Yes, this, too! I mean, it's been forty years and suddenly - she's a threat? C'mon.
fluteaphrael 9th-May-2013 04:29 am (UTC)
There are way too many questions about the fairness of that trial at all, but seriously someone who has been quietly living their life mostly for all this time while I can understand them wanting to apprehend her? This is not "most wanted" territory here. There are people committing current crimes, dangerous people who have made current threats.
underlankers 4th-May-2013 12:17 am (UTC)
So.....my reaction is basically this:

WHAT I mean we've had people get away with much worse in that timeframe and not get that word applied, so why's this woman still wanted for a crime that happened in the 70s? Murdering people is bad, that doesn't need to be stated because it's self-evident, but there are people who murdered people in that time who never got the t-word applied to them.

And saying this woman is a supreme terror because she killed someone in the 70s and has done nothing against the law since then? That's not what supreme means.

Edited at 2013-05-04 12:19 am (UTC)
cyberghostface 4th-May-2013 12:57 am (UTC)
She's done a lot more than killing one guy (which should be enough):

curseangel 4th-May-2013 01:37 am (UTC)
I'm sure you mean she's been accused of doing a lot more, because she was acquitted of all other charges..
underlankers 4th-May-2013 03:13 am (UTC)
If you read what I said, I said that she murdered someone, but did object to use of the word terrorism or supreme terror. She's a murderer, but terrorism requires a little more than simple murder. Bank robberies and shootouts still don't make her a terrorist unless Bonnie and Clyde or John Dillinger were terrorists.
__nocturna 4th-May-2013 12:23 am (UTC)
lol of course you people would make excuses for her
mary_pickforded 4th-May-2013 02:38 am (UTC)
romp 4th-May-2013 03:09 am (UTC)
if you understand why this person is "a "supreme terror" to the United States, please don't be shy about sharing it
underlankers 4th-May-2013 03:14 am (UTC)
Uh, there's a long line between agreeing someone may be a bank robber and murderer and agreeing that person's a terrorist. Do you consider John Dillinger and Bonnie and Clyde terrorists? If not, what has she done that they did not? Other than joining a black nationalist group, that is?
hinoema 4th-May-2013 09:59 am (UTC)
"You people?" Yeah, that's not a huge 'incoming bias' flag...

And if she's such a terrorist, why aren't the people behind, say, Oklahoma City or Waco (incidents with a far higher body count and more explicit motives) uber-terroritsts by now?

Edited at 2013-05-04 10:01 am (UTC)
cinchona 11th-May-2013 05:25 am (UTC)
Yeah, pretty typical of this place.
maclyn 4th-May-2013 01:46 am (UTC)
So let's just ignore that COINTELPRO was involved in working against the Panthers and created a situation where the polis where pretty much told to shoot on site, and used fabricated charges to create that situation, eh? And her name is Assata Shakur.
kitschaster 4th-May-2013 01:56 am (UTC)
mimblexwimble 5th-May-2013 05:55 am (UTC)

just look at the official evidence in the case, and read up on the recanted testimonies. there was a lot wrong with this case. it would not surprise me to find out she is innocent.
romp 4th-May-2013 03:05 am (UTC)
Does anyone know what is happening with this? Why now? IDGI
poetic_pixie_13 4th-May-2013 06:55 am (UTC)
Her name is Assata Shakur, ffs.
hinoema 4th-May-2013 09:57 am (UTC)
"Joanne Chesimard is a domestic terrorist who murdered a law enforcement officer execution-style," said Aaron Ford, special agent in charge of the FBI's Newark Division.

It sounds to me as if the Right is really stretching so that when another disillusioned white dude commits a heinous crime that damn well should be label domestic terrorism, they can point and say "You do it too!"
redstar826 4th-May-2013 06:20 pm (UTC)
so, if she's been in Cuba for the past 30 years, why the renewed interest in catching her now?
fifthmorn 5th-May-2013 05:35 am (UTC)
Because her name is Assata Shakur. It it were Angela Smith, we probably wouldn't have heard about this shit again.
redstar826 7th-May-2013 11:24 am (UTC)
I'm neither the OP nor a mod, so I don't have any control over the tags
redstar826 7th-May-2013 01:28 pm (UTC)
lol nah, I've got enough stress in my life as is :)
angelofdeath275 8th-May-2013 03:07 am (UTC)
OP can you tag this correctly
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