CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
April 8, 1988 |
Former Black Panther leader Johnny Spain, a "San Quentin Six" defendant who spent 21 years behind bars, retained his freedom Thursday when a Los Angeles Superior Court judge refused to overturn the order that brought his release from prison. Judge Kathleen Parker denied a motion by the state attorney general's office asking her to rescind her March 8 finding that ordered Spain's release from the California Medical Facility at Vacaville last month.
March 22, 1988
A state board, tangled in an unusual legal web, delayed a decision on whether to parole former Black Panther member Johnny Spain, whom a court already has freed after 21 years in prison for murder. The full state Board of Prison Terms voted unanimously to have one of its smaller three-member panels reconsider parole of the "San Quentin Six" member, even though he was released from Vacaville state prison March 10 on court orders that required $350,000 bail.
March 11, 1988 |
After 21 years behind bars, former Black Panther leader and "San Quentin Six" defendant Johnny Spain walked out of prison Thursday, but acknowledged that he may have to return. "I'm here to say I won't let anyone down who has supported me," Spain, 38, said upon leaving the state prison here. He was met by his attorney, Dennis Riordan, who worked 12 years to free him. Other supporters, including a private investigator who has worked on Spain's behalf since 1971, also were there. U.S.
March 10, 1988 |
Johnny Spain, a one-time revolutionary who took part in California's worst prison riot but later became a model inmate, was ordered freed on bail Wednesday after 21 years behind bars. Spain, a former Black Panther who has since renounced radical politics, could be free as early as this morning. U.S. District Judge Thelton Henderson set bail at $350,000 while Spain awaits a new trial on murder and conspiracy charges stemming from the 1971 San Quentin prison riot that left six people dead.
February 12, 1988 |
Under pressure from a federal judge, a divided state parole panel Thursday ordered the release of former Black Panther Johnny Spain, the only person convicted of murder in a bloody 1971 San Quentin prison riot that left three inmates and three guards dead. The panel voted 2 to 1 that Spain should be freed within two years, with the specific parole date determined by Spain's prison behavior. He could be free as early as 16 months from Thursday.