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Very important, folks! Please read!


Arrests Made in Foster Assassination

By Patrick Mondout

A pair of Symbionese Liberation Army members were pulled over by police in the Oakland suburb of Concord on the night of January 11, 1974. Officer Dave Duge pulled the two over after he noticed their van slowly casing the neighborhood. Russell Little, the driver, explained that he was looking for the "DeVoto" residence.

The officer checked with dispatch and found that there was no "DeVoto" family in the neighborhood. The officer asked the pair to step out of the car and Joseph Remiro, a former Vietnam veteran, came out of the van shooting.

Little took off in the van and was hit by a stray bullet, but not seriously hurt. The van was soon found with Little was slumped over the steering wheel. Remiro, who took off on foot, was taken into custody after a four hour search of the neighborhood.

Police found weapons and SLA literature in the back of the vehicle. Ballistics reports showed that the .38 caliber gun Remiro used to shoot at the officers was the same used to kill Marcus Foster.

Oakland police also announced in a related case that they had an "female Oriental" in custody after she was stopped earlier in the day with with weapons in her car. That description would appear to match Wendy Yoshimura, though how she got out of that jam is a mystery (she had many aliases and had used false identities before).

Later that night, SLA member Nancy Ling Perry timed explosives to take out the three bedroom house they were using as a headquarters. It did not go off as well as planned  and the police were still able to find SLA literature, more cyanide-dipped bullets, a picture of Marcus Foster, and weapons.

One piece of evidence they should have paid more attention to was an SLA "arrest warrant" for Patty Hearst to be carried out "on the night of the full moon, January 7." Perhaps since that date had already passed without incident, they ignored it. The next full moon was on February 6th, though it was almost full on February 4.

Perry tried to downplay the significance of the building and their bungled destruction of it in a communiqué released about a week later in order to make the group appear more competent and larger than the small headquarters and poorly-executed explosion indicated.

Little and Remiro were charged in connection with the murder of Dr. Marcus Foster. They took the unprecedent step of moving the unconvicted prisoners to San Quentin, where they held them in confinement for their own protection (the police had well-founded fears of reprisals against the accused murderers of an African-American leader). The police were also said to be searching for Nancy C. DeVoto, but that is just one of many aliases of Nancy Ling Perry, who actually shot Foster (and was the name Little used with police when pulled over). They police caught up with Perry during a televised 1974 shootout in LA, but were unable to take her alive.

During the trial of Little and Remiro, a defense witness named Rudy Henderson, who owned the "Fruity Rudy" fruit juice stand where Nancy Ling Perry worked until seven weeks before the killing, said that Perry told him that she had killed Foster along with Willy Wolfe and Donald DeFreeze.

Rudy, who was a jazz musician like Perry's first husband, was also her lover. Henderson told reporter Lacey Fosburgh all about Perry in April of 1974 without once mentioning that she had been in on the murder. Clifford "Death Row" Jefferson also claimed during the trial that he ordered Willy Wolf to do the Foster murder from his jail cell and that Little and Remiro had nothing to do with it. Jefferson had earned his nickname, had known some of the SLA members from their work in the prisons, and had nothing to lose. It is common in such cases for such people to take the blame or blame those already dead.

Both were convicted, but Russ Little's sentence was overturned in 1979 due to faulty jury instructions. Little's retrial resulted in an acquittal. Remiro, who was dumb enough to carry the "Foster gun" around with him, is serving a life sentence.




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Russ Little's mug shot

Oakland Sheriff's Department

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