Fred Hampton,

Chicago, Illinois
December 04, 1969

Agencies: Federal Bureau of Investigation - FBI | Cook County State Attorney's Office Illinois | Chicago Police Department Illinois | Cook County sheriff’s office Illinois

Cause of death: Shooting

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Last updated: about 5 years ago


At 4:45 a.m. on December 4, 1969, Cook County State’s Attorney Edward Hanrahan led a police raid on the apartment of Illinois Black Panther Party (BPP) leader Fred Hampton. Ostensibly the raid was planned in order to confiscate weapons stored by the Black Panthers at Mr. Hampton’s home. They found no weapons in the home and arrested five members of the BPP including Mr. Hampton’s fiancee, Deborah Johnson, who was 8 ½ months pregnant at the time. (All five had all charges against them dropped.)

Mr. Hampton was asleep when the Chicago PD stormed his apartment because an FBI informant, William O'Neal, slipped barbituates into his drink during a BPP dinner earlier in the evening. Mr. O'Neal was the Chicago BPP chief of security who had also given the FBI a complete layout of Mr. Hampton’s apartment.

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