January 23, 2002
Hadassa Gilbert (letter, Jan. 20) defies anyone to explain how society is safer if people like Sara Jane Olson are put in prison for the rest of their lives. In the 1690s George Savile wrote, "Men are not hanged for stealing horses, but that horses may not be stolen." We are not worried about vengeance. We are making a statement that we will not accept violent behavior as a way of expressing a viewpoint. Dave Parton Ventura
January 20, 2002
Re "A Son Has Been Waiting 26 Years for Justice," Jan. 17: Columnist Steve Lopez and Jon Opsahl have it wrong. It is not the function of the justice system to provide therapy or vengeance to Jon Opsahl or even to focus on his slain mother, Myrna Opsahl. That is the function of the civil courts. The job of the criminal justice system is to keep our society safe. I defy anyone to tell me how our society is any safer if Sara Jane Olson, Bill Harris, Emily Harris (Montague) or Michael Bortin are put in prison for the rest of their lives.
January 20, 2002 |
As they did every Monday, a group of women from the Carmichael Seventh-day Adventist Church drove to the bank on Marconi Avenue to count the money deposited there by church elders after Saturday services. This time, on April 21, 1975, the volunteers were Bernadine Slackman, Beatrice Squier and Myrna Opsahl, who carried the cumbersome adding machine.
January 19, 2002 |
A Los Angeles judge sentenced accused Symbionese Liberation Army member Sara Jane Olson Friday to 20 years to life in prison for her role in a failed bomb plot to kill LAPD officers in 1975. Moments later, Olson--who lived as a suburban Midwestern mom while on the lam for more than two decades--pleaded not guilty to murder charges in a 1975 Sacramento-area bank robbery that left a mother of four dead.
January 18, 2002 |
Changes in technology and politics, along with luck and hard work, revived the case against five former revolutionaries accused of killing a bystander during a 1975 armed robbery of a Crocker National Bank branch in a suburb outside Sacramento, prosecutors and legal analysts said. Twenty-five years ago, federal attorneys in Sacramento failed to convict an alleged member of the Symbionese Liberation Army of participating in the robbery.
January 17, 2002 |
Over the years, the sight of Sara Jane Olson's face was enough to fill Dr. Jon Opsahl with anger. It was the way she seemed to proffer a Norman Rockwell-like lifestyle as a defense to charges that, more than a quarter of a century ago when she was known as Kathleen Soliah, she allegedly helped a band of self-styled revolutionaries who gunned down Opsahl's mother as she deposited church offering receipts in a small-town bank branch.
January 17, 2002 |
A full generation after their alleged crime, William and Emily Harris and Sara Jane Olson, co-survivors of the weird and violent revolutionary movement known as the Symbionese Liberation Army, were arrested Wednesday and charged with murdering a Sacramento-area church volunteer during a 1975 bank robbery. A fourth person, Michael Bortin, was arrested on similar charges.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
December 14, 2001 |
Sara Jane Olson said Thursday she knew she was breaking the law when she gave Symbionese Liberation Army members fake identifications and other help in the 1970s. But she said she never imagined her behavior might land her in prison for life. Olson, in an interview at her lawyer's office in Beverly Hills, said she gave the SLA members money, rented cars and apartments on their behalf, and helped them flee from law enforcement authorities.
December 9, 2001
Re "Sara Jane Saga Ends--We Hope," Dec. 5: Sara Jane Olson is a beautiful, intelligent, generous, compassionate mother, wife, community activist and artist. She is a pillar of humanity. Of course she hid all these years from small-minded, vindictive troglodytes like your (former city attorney) Mayor James Hahn, Deputy Dist. Attys. Eleanor Hunter and Michael Latin and a lynch mob typified by your disgustingly callous writer Steve Lopez, who glibly compares Olson's torment about going to jail for the rest of her life with indecisively ordering a pizza.
December 6, 2001
Re "Olson's Attempt to Change Plea Fails," Dec. 4: In denying Sara Jane Olson's attempt to withdraw her guilty plea for her alleged part in planting bombs under two police cars, Judge Larry Paul Fidler has also denied her the constitutional right to be tried by a jury of her peers. If indeed Olson's attorney, J. Tony Serra, coerced her, as he has said, into pleading guilty out of fear that the post-9/11 political climate might have helped the prosecution convict her, making her sentence more severe, then Judge Fidler's decision sets a very bad precedent.