Thursday, February 4, 2010


Huey Newton and fellow activist Bobby Seale founded the radical Black Panther Party in 1966. Under their leadership the group became a political force both admired and feared for its aggressively militant stance. In 1967 Newton was arrested and charged with killing an Oakland police officer during a dispute, leading to a much-publicized "Free Huey" campaign organized by the Panthers. His 1968 conviction was overturned due to procedural errors. In 1973 Newton escaped other criminal charges by fleeing to Cuba; he returned in 1977 and in 1980 earned a doctorate in philosophy from the University of California. Newton was killed in a 1989 dispute with a drug dealer.

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