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August 05, 1980 - Image 6

Resource type:
Michigan Daily, 1980-08-05

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Page 6-Tuesday, August 5, 1980-The Michigan Daily
Widows disrupt Klan trial


Shouting that the trial was a "sham,"
the widows of two leftists were led from
a courtroom and sentenced to 30 days in;
jail yesterday for disrupting the
opening of the murder trial of six Ku
Klux Klansmen and Nazis. Deputies put
adhesive tape over one woman's
Marty Nathan, widow of Michael
Nathan, one of five Communist
Workers Party members killed at a
"Death to the Klan" rally last Nov. 3,
was gagged when she refused an order
by Superior Court Judge James Long to
be quiet. Long ordered her and Floris
Cauce, widow of Cesar Vinson Cauce, to
serve 30 days for contempt of court.
THE COURTROOM also was briefly
disrupted by a false fire alarm, but,
there were no evacuations. Don Pelles,
36, of Durham, was charged with set-
ting off the alarm.
The outbursts by the two widows oc-
curred as Long was giving an opening
ststement to the all-white jury of six
men and six women that will hear the
trial, which is expected to last about
three months. Jury selection took six
The Klansmen and Nazis are charged
with five counts each of first-degree
murder in the shooting deaths. They
also are charged with felonious rioting.
IN HIS opening remarks, Assistant
District Attorney James Coman said,
"The eyes of Greensboro, the eyes of
North Carolina, and the eyes of the
United States are focused on us here
Coman said prosecutors will try to
prove that the defendants deliberately
planned to kill the CWP members or
that the victims were slain during a
riot. He said that would make the
killers guilty of first-degree murder
under a state law that provides a first-
degree chargefor any murder commit-
ted during the act of a felony.
When the trial began, security was
tight in the courtroom and around the


Guilford County Courthouse. Police
were stationed on the grounds of the
courthouse and atop nearby buildings
and sheriff's deputies patrolled the
halls and courtroom.
SHORTLY AFTER Long began in-
structing the jury, Nathan jumped to
her feet and shouted, "This trial is a
sham and a farce.
"The U.S. government is trying to en-
force-fascism," she said. "They con-
spired to kill members of the CWP, in-
cluding my husband."
At that point, the judge told the jury
to leave. Deputies, holding Nathan's
arms securely, took her to the front of

the courtroom, where they gagged her
with a wide band of adhesive tape after
she ignored the judge's orders to be
Deputies removed the gag to allow
Nathan to explain the outburst, but she
resumed her criticism saying, "My
defense is that my husband was mur-
dered November 3rd, 1979." 4
LONG ORDERED her gagged again,
and she continued to mumble through
the tape. A deputy clasped his hand
over her mouth and took her to jail.
After the jury returned and Long
resumed instructions, Cauce took up
Nathan's criticisms, saying the deaths

were the result of a government con-
Cauce was taken to the front of the
courtroom, but she remained silent, as
Long ordered. She was then ushered
from court by deputies.
Long told jurors "not to be influenced
by any such outburst." He reminded
jurors not to read accounts of the trial
or watch television news concerning it.
Coman said the state will try to show
that the seeds for the Nov. 3 shootings
were planted in a confrontation bet-
ween left- and right-wing extremists at
China Grove on July 8, 1979.


Hurricane Allen wreaks
havoc on Caribbean isle

CASTRIES, St. Lucia (AP) -
Hurricane Allen, the most intense
storm to ravage the eastern Caribbean
in this century, delivered a devastating
swipe at St. Lucia island yesterday,
destroying hundreds of homes and
causing at least eight deaths, officials
Planning Minister Michael Pilgrim
called it "a national disaster."
Weather service officials in Puerto
Rico said the killer storm was still
gaining strength, with winds peaking at
160 mph. Based on the plunging
barometric pressure in the eye of the
storm, the officials said it was the most
intense hurricane to move through the
eastern Caribbean's hurricane alley in
this century.
ALLEN, ALSO the first hurricane of
the season, swept just north of Bar-
bados and south of St. Lucia and then
moved westward churning the open sea
with its fury.

Hurricane watches were orderd in
Haiti and the Dominican Republic,
which share the island of Hispaniola.
Weather service officials said the storm
probably would not strike any land area
for at least 12 hours, but Puerto Rico
and the Virgin Islands should expect
heavy weather.
Barbados also was pummeled as the
killer storm passed by, and there were
unconfirmed reports of two storm-
related deaths there.
St. Lucia officials said there were
eight known deaths on the small island
and the toll was expected to rise as
rescue teams looked for missing per-
The savage winds blew away part of
the roof over wards at Victoria Hospital
in Castries, the capital of St. Lucia.
But Pilgrim said the greatest damage
was inflicted in the Vieux Fort area at
the southern tip of the island.

Telephone service was disrupted, but
Pilgrim said reports arriving from
Vieux Fort said it was "in a terrible
state." He said his own home in the
southern district had been "smashed
Uprooted trees fell across power lines
and blocked roads, Pilgrim said, and
torrential rains caused mudslides in
some areas. A Venezuelan navy ship
visiting Castries ran aground and
scores of small boats were swept away,
other officials said.
rate up at
N.Y. bank
NEW YORK (AP) - The prime len-
ding rate, a key guidepost of interest
rate trends, edged upward yesterday at
one New York bank - the first increase
in four months.
The jump has a direct effect only on
business borrowers, but Wall Street
analysts said it could foreshadow
higher consumer loan rates in coming
weeks. For example, home mortgage
rates are already on the upswing in
CHEMICAL BANK, the nation's sixth
largest, said it boosted its prime rate by
one-quarter of a percentage point to 11
per cent because its cost of acquiring
funds had risen.
"We raised the prime in response to
an overall firming of interest rates
over the last 10 days," a Chemical
spokesman said. "We're not prepared
to say anything more than that."
Less than two weeks ago, Chemical
cut its prime rate to 10.75 per cent while
most other banks stayed at 11 per cent.
By rejoining the rest of the industry at
11 per cent, Chemical left only Chase
Manhattan Bank, the third-largest U.S.
commercial bank, at 10.75 per cent.
The jump in the prime rate comes
amid a general upswing in open-market
interest rates such as the rate banks
pay on overnight loans from other
banks. That has led some analysts to
suggest the Federal Reserve Board is
tightening its reins on credit.





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