The Truth coming at you like a hurricane!


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Source: The Truth coming at you like a hurricane!

 

 

(November 18, 1975, Annie Mae Aquash, left and Darlene P. Nichols, walked
handcuffed from federal marshal’s car into overnight quarter’s
Monday in Vacouver’s Clark County Courthouse.
(Journal photo by Ralph Perry)


Testimony of Darlene Nichols in the
Trial of Arlo Looking Cloud
February 3, 2004



MR. McMAHON: The United States calls Darlene Nichols.

DARLENE NICHOLS,

called as a witness, being first duly sworn, testified and

said as follows:

DIRECT EXAMINATION BY MR. McMAHON:

Q. Would you state your name, please?

A. My name is Darlene Nichols, most people call me Kamook.

Q. Where were you born?

A. I was born in Scotts Bluff, Nebraska.

Q. Where did you grow up?

A. In Pine Ridge, South Dakota.

Q. Did you go to high school in Pine Ridge?

A. I went to high school part of the time at Marty, South

Dakota, and at Pine Ridge.

Q. Where do you live now?

A. New Mexico.

Q. When were you first exposed to the American Indian

Movement ?

A. In February of 1972.

Q. How did that come about?

A. The American Indian Movement came to Pine Ridge, they

were protesting how the death of Randy (Raymond) Yellow Thunder

had been handled.

Q. How old would you have been at that time?

A. Seventeen.

Q. Would you have graduated yet from high school?

A. No.

Q. Between what years would you have been in school, were

you a junior, senior?

A. I was a junior in high school.

Q. So were there some meetings held that you attended?

A. Yes.

Q. How many meetings did you go to, do you remember?

A. That night there was one at the high school gymnasium

and I went to that meeting.

Q. Were there more meetings within the days following that,

or was there just one?

A. Yes.

Q. Did you attend those other meetings also?

A. Yes.

Q. Did you meet any of the people affiliated with AIM that

were there for those meetings?

A. Yes.

Q. Who did you meet?

A. I met Dennis Banks, Russell Means, I met Leonard Peltier.

Q. So you would have finished school for the year some time

that spring I am assuming?

A. I finished school in December, had all the credits I

needed to finish school, and then officially graduated in May of 1973.

Q. But the meetings we were talking about were during your

junior year, right?

A. Right.

Q. So you would have finished the school year that spring,

that would have been your junior year?

A. Yes.

Q. Then you went back to high school the next fall?

A. Yes.

Q. Did I understand you correctly then that you actually

finished your course work in December?

A. Yes.

Q. December of what year?

A. 1972.

Q. Then the rest of your class finished in the spring of

’73?

A. Yes.

Q. And that is when you actually got your diploma?

A. Yes.

Q. When you finished your classes in December of ’72, tell

us what you did after that?

A. I traveled to Oklahoma and spent a couple of weeks with

my aunt. Dennis contacted me, I moved back to Rapid City, and

resided here.

Q. Why did you go back to Rapid City?

A. Dennis called me. He made arrangements for me to fly

back up here and he would pick me up at the airport.

Q. Talking about Dennis Banks?

A. Yes.

Q. Had you and he started some type of a relationship

before that time?

A. Yes.

Q. When you flew back up to Rapid City after he called you,

were you with him continually after that then?

A. Yes.

Q. Did you live together?

A. Yes.

Q. Did you eventually have children together?

A. Yes.

Q. How many children did you have together?

A. Four.

Q. How long were the two of you together?

A. Seventeen years.

Q. You separated when?

A. In April of 1989.

Q. When was it that you traveled to Rapid City to join Mr. Banks?

A. In January of 1973.

Q. Where did the two of you go after that?

A. Well, we lived here, and then they were having the

hearings and we lived in Rapid City, and February 6 was the

Custer riot.

Q. February 6 you said was the Custer riot, what do you

mean by that?

A. Well, there were several hundred people in Custer

protesting the death of Wesley Bad Heart Bull.

Q. Was Dennis Banks arrested as a result of that?

A. Eventually.

Q. Were you down there at Custer also?

A. Yes.

Q. Other members of AIM down there?

A. Yes.

Q. What happened of any significance after the Custer incident?

MR. RENSCH: Objection, relevance, Your Honor.

THE COURT: Overruled.

A. After Custer was Wounded Knee.

BY MR. McMAHON:

Q. What do you mean by Wounded Knee?

A. We went to Wounded Knee, there were several hundred

people there, February 23.

Q. It started February 27?

A. Yes.

Q. Was that an occupation of Wounded Knee that you are

talking about?

A. Yes.

Q. Was it an armed occupation?

MR. RENSCH: Objection, leading, Your Honor.

THE COURT: Sustained.

BY MR. McMAHON:

Q. Were you at Wounded Knee?

A. Yes.

Q. Were there weapons present?

A. Yes.

Q. How long did the occupation last?

A. Seventy-one days.

Q. Were you there the whole time?

A. I was there until April 27, my uncle Buddy LaMonte, he

was my mom’s brother, and he got killed.

Q. At Wounded Knee?

A. Yes.

Q. Did you leave then?

A. Yes.

Q. Did you ever go back?

A. We went back approximately a week and a half later

because we buried him at Wounded Knee.

Q. Do you know someone by the name of Anna Mae Aquash?

A. Yes.

Q. When did you first meet her?

A. I met her when she came to Wounded Knee with her husband

Nogeeshik.

(Exhibit 14 marked For identification.)

BY MR. McMAHON:

Q. I have laid in front of you what has been marked I think

Exhibit 14, would you look on the back of that for me, please?

A. Yes, this is 14.

Q. You recognize that?

A. Yes.

Q. What is it?

A. It is a picture of Anna Mae.

Q. Anna Mae Aquash?

A. Yes.

Q. Is that what she looked like when you met her at Wounded

Knee in 1973?

A. Yes, it is.

MR. McMAHON: Offer Exhibit 14, Your Honor.

MR. RENSCH: No objection.

THE COURT: Exhibit 14 is received.

BY MR. McMAHON:

Q. What did you do after the events at Wounded Knee ended?

A. We left Wounded Knee, Dennis and I went to Salt Lake City, Utah.

Q. Why did you go to Salt Lake City?

A. Because Dennis was hiding from the FBI.

Q. We have got the picture up of Anna Mae. Where was she from?

A. Nova Scotia.

Q. Was she a member of a particular tribe?

A. Mik’maq.

Q. Did she have any children?

A. Yes.

Q. How many?

A. Two.

Q. Were they daughters or sons?

A. Two girls.

Q. Did you ever meet them?

A. No, not during that time I never met them.

Q. You know how old they were?

A. They were approximately eight and ten.

Q. Let’s get back to your trip to Salt Lake City. Had

Dennis Banks been charged with any criminal offenses as a

result of Wounded Knee?

A. Yes.

Q. Is that why you were on the run?

A. Yes.

Q. How long did you stay in Utah?

A. We were there for a couple of months.

Q. Did Mr. Banks eventually go to trial on those charges?

A. Yes.

Q. And where did that take place?

A. In St. Paul, Minnesota.

Q. How long did that trial last?

A. From January of 1974 through August.

Q. Of 1974?

A. Yes.

Q. I am going to jump ahead a little bit. Well, before I

do, did you stay up in St. Paul for the whole trial with him?

A. Yes.

Q. Was Anna Mae Aquash ever there?

A. Yes.

Q. How much of the time was she there?

A. She lived in that area.

Q. And between the time that you first met her at Wounded

Knee in 1973, and then through that trial, did you see her off

and on at different AIM functions?

A. Yes.

Q. Did you and she become friends?

A. Yes.

Q. Now I want to jump ahead to June of 1975.

A. Okay.

Q. Did you attend a national AIM convention anywhere at that time?

A. Yes.

Q. Where was it at?

A. In Farmington, New Mexico.

Q. Approximately how many people attended that?

A. Maybe three hundred.

Q. Was Mr. Banks with you?

A. Yes.

Q. Was Anna Mae there?

A. Pardon?

Q. Was Anna Mae there?

A. Yes.

Q. Were there other leaders of the AIM movement there?

A. Yes.

Q. Who were some of those people that were there?

A. Clyde Bellecourt, Vernon Bellecourt, Larry Anderson,

Leonard Peltier.

Q. What was the purpose of having this get-together?

A. It was a AIM convention that had been organized.

Q. Was that something that was done yearly?

A. Pretty much, it was in different locations.

Q. Were there different AIM chapters around the country?

A. Yes.

Q. Was this the type of gathering that was used for members

of the different chapters to get together?

A. Yes.

Q. You mentioned that Anna Mae Aquash was there. Were

there any rumors going about, going around about her at that

point in time?

MR. RENSCH: Objection, hearsay, Your Honor.

THE COURT: Overruled. Simply asking if there were

rumors. Overruled, go ahead.

A. Yes.

BY MR. McMAHON:

Q. Was it being discussed openly, these rumors?

A. Yes.

Q. What were the rumors that were going around?

MR. RENSCH: Objection, hearsay.

THE COURT: The requested testimony is hearsay, but

I am going to admit it for a limited purpose only, this is a

limiting instruction. It isn’t admitted nor received for the

truth of the matter stated. In other words, whether the rumor

is true or not. It is simply received as to what the rumor

was. So it is limited to what the rumor was, it is not

admitted for the truth of the statement as to whether the

rumor was true or not. So with that limiting instruction,

which in part grants the objection, but the objection beyond

that is overruled.

MR. RENSCH: I would also like if I could to object

on the grounds of 403 as well. And relevance.

THE COURT: Overruled.

BY MR. McMAHON:

Q. Go ahead and answer the question, Ms. Nichols, as to

what the rumors were?

A. Yes.

Q. What were those rumors?

A. That she was an informant.

Q. What was her demeanor in Farmington, New Mexico?

A. She was upset. She was very quiet.

Q. Did she act frightened?

A. Yes.

Q. Was she ever confronted with these allegations that she

was an informant?

A. Yes.

Q. Who confronted her?

A. Leonard Peltier.

Q. What happened?

MR. RENSCH: Objection, personal knowledge, Your

Honor.

THE COURT: Sustained as to foundation.

BY MR. McMAHON:

Q. Did the confrontation you were going to talk about occur

in Farmington, New Mexico?

A. Yes.

Q. You were there?

A. Yes.

Q. Were people talking about the confrontation after it occurred?

A. Yes.

MR. RENSCH: Objection, hearsay, Your Honor.

THE COURT: Overruled.

BY MR. McMAHON:

Q. Was it being openly discussed by everyone?

A. Yes.

Q. Was it common knowledge among all the people down there?

MR. RENSCH: Objection, leading and argumentative.

THE COURT: Sustained as to form.

BY MR. McMAHON:

Q. Did you hear the discussions about what had happened?

A. Yes.

Q. What did you hear?

MR. RENSCH: Objection, hearsay, relevance, 403.

Also confrontation clause.

THE COURT: The objection is sustained in part,

overruled in part. Once again what this witness heard is

admitted not for the truth of the matter stated, but simply

for the fact of whatever was being stated. And so that’s a

limiting instruction again similar to the last one, because it

is hearsay, but it is admissible for a limited purpose only.

Overruled to that extent. You may proceed.

BY MR. McMAHON:

Q. You may answer the question. Do you remember what it

was? It was what did you hear that took place in the confrontation?

A. I heard that he had taken her away from the camp in a

car and had put a gun to her head, and that he wanted to know

if she was an informant.

Q. Did you hear what her response was?

A. Yes.

MR. RENSCH: Same series of objections, and may I

have a continuing objection along these lines, Your Honor?

THE COURT: Yes. Granted in part, overruled in

part. This is once again hearsay, and not received for the

truth of the matter stated. You may respond.

MR. RENSCH: Your Honor, can we approach for one

moment, please?

THE COURT: You may.

(Bench Conference)

MR. RENSCH: Your Honor, at this point I would

request the government to specify the purpose for offering

such testimony. In the ruling that you made and the

instruction to the jury it sounds as though the Court has said

to the jury that the information will not be received for the

truth of the matter asserted, and then it almost was as if the

jury had been instructed that it could be received for

whatever was said, and from that standpoint to protect the

record I would request of the government to tell us the

purpose of that statement so I can protect the record.

THE COURT: Anything you want to say?

MR. McMAHON: Well, I don’t think I have to state

any purposes for offering that type of evidence. It is

clearly not being offered for the truth of the matter stated.

It is not hearsay for that purpose. I think that’s the end of the —

MR. RENSCH: In the way the questions are framed

there could be no other reason other than the fact that this

happened.

THE COURT: Well, it seems to me this has to do with

the state of mind of Aquash and what she was doing.

MR. McMAHON: It is not Mr. Peltier that is on trial.

MR. RENSCH: I want to say the foundation hasn’t

been laid that this is what Ms. Aquash had in fact said, and

thus it wouldn’t be in the present impression or any exception

to the hearsay rule on the basis of broad news.

THE COURT: You made your record.

MR. RENSCH: Thank you.

(End Bench Conference).

BY MR. McMAHON:

Q. Kamook, I think we were talking about the exchange that

had taken place, the confrontation, and I believe the question

that was pending was what Anna Mae Aquash, what her response

was to the confrontation. You can go ahead and answer.

A. She told him that if he believed that, he should go

ahead and shoot her.

Q. She wasn’t shot, was she?

A. No.

Q. In June of 1975 did your relationship with Anna Mae

Aquash change at that time?

A. Yes.

Q. Why?

A. Because my, I was told that she had a relationship with Dennis.

Q. Dennis Banks?

A. Yes.

Q. Where did you go after the conference in Farmington was

completed?

A. Back to Oglala.

Q. Oglala is on the Pine Ridge Reservation?

A. Yes.

Q. Were you and Mr. Banks living there?

A. Yes.

Q. And this would have still been in June?

A. Yes.

Q. I am going to call your attention to June 26, 1975, were

you on the Pine Ridge Reservation on that day?

A. Yes.

Q. Why do you remember that day specifically?

MR. RENSCH: Objection, relevance, 403, and personal knowledge.

THE COURT: Overruled — relevance and what?

MR. RENSCH: 403 and personal knowledge.

THE COURT: Overruled.

BY MR. McMAHON:

Q. Why do you specifically remember that day?

A. Because there was a shoot-out where we live.

Q. A shoot-out?

A. Yes.

Q. What did you do that day?

A. That morning my, I had one daughter, she had asthma, so

that morning she was sick, and I got up early and I took her

in to Pine Ridge to the hospital.

Q. Was that a daughter that Mr. Banks was the father of?

A. Yes.

Q. So you went to the hospital. After that where did you go?

A. Pardon?

Q. Where did you go from the hospital?

A. Well, at the hospital they told me that she wasn’t going

to be better later in the day, that I needed to take her to

Gordon, Nebraska to the doctor. So I went to look for my mom

to go with me, and they said she was in Oglala at a class. So

I drove to Oglala to look for my mother at Woman Day School,

and they said she had just left. So I left the school and was

driving south, and when I came up onto the highway where you

could see our house I saw —

MR. RENSCH: I hate to interrupt, can I have a

continuing objection so I don’t need to keep objecting as to

what happened on June 26, 1975 on the grounds previously

stated?

THE COURT: Which is 403.

MR. RENSCH: Relevance, and personal knowledge.

THE COURT: You have your objection with regard to

June 26, and overruled, but you do have one with regard to

those bases with regard to that date.

MR. RENSCH: Thank you, I won’t interrupt any more.

BY MR. McMAHON:

Q. Go ahead, Ms. Nichols?

A. I was driving down the highway, and I saw cop cars

turning in to our property. And so I looked to the right and

I saw them lined up in the fields way over here, so I turned

in to see what was going on. And when I pulled up to where

our house was, the grass was maybe three or four feet high in

front of our house, and I saw a couple hands come out of the

weeds and just waving for me to go back. So I made a U-turn

and drove back out to the highway.

Q. Did you hear anything?

A. As I was driving away I could hear shooting.

Q. What had happened that day?

A. Two FBI agents and got killed.

Q. Where were you in July of 1975?

A. In Custer.

Q. Why were you in Custer?

A. Dennis was on trial for the Custer charges.

Q. Were you there for the whole trial?

A. Yes.

Q. Where did you stay?

A. At the Bavarian Inn.

Q. Was Mr. Banks convicted of some of those charges?

A. Yes.

Q. Did Anna Mae Aquash ever attend any of the trial?

A. Yes.

Q. Did she ever show up at the motel?

A. Yes.

Q. Were there ever any allegations made against her while

she was at the hotel?

A. Yes.

Q. Could you tell me what those were?

MR. RENSCH: Objection, hearsay.

THE COURT: Sustained in part, again a limiting

instruction. It is hearsay, at least on the basis of the

record that we have at this point, and it is not received for

the truth of whether or not those things were in fact said,

and so it is so limited.

BY MR. McMAHON:

Q. Go ahead and answer the question. You don’t remember

the question you look like?

A. Yes, the allegations were made.

Q. What were the allegations that were made?

MR. RENSCH: Objection, foundation, time and place,

who was present.

THE COURT: Sustained.

BY MR. McMAHON:

Q. Were you present when the allegations were made?

A. Yes.

Q. Was that at the hotel?

A. Yes.

Q. What was the allegation that you heard?

A. Dennis and myself and my daughter were in our room when

Crow Dog came in.

Q. Who was that?

A. Leonard Crow Dog. He came in and he was very angry. He

was yelling, and he told Dennis that he had kicked Anna Mae

off of his property, she was a fed, he didn’t want her on his property.

Q. She was a fed, is that what you said?

A. Yes.

Q. Where is Mr. Crow Dog’s property?

A. In Rosebud, South Dakota.

Q. Why was Anna Mae there?

A. At Crow Dog’s?

Q. Yes.

A. She had been camping down there.

Q. Was that a place where a number of AIM members camped?

A. Yes.

Q. You stated that Mr. Banks was convicted of some of the

charges. Was he let out on bond after the trial?

A. Yes.

Q. Do you remember when he was supposed to report back for

his sentencing?

A. September 5th.

Q. Where did you go after the trial?

A. We went to Crow Dog’s.

Q. So that is the same place that Anna Mae had been staying?

A. Yes.

Q. What was going on at Crow Dog’s when you went there?

A. We were getting ready for the sundance.

Q. Were there often sundances held there?

A. Annually.

Q. What time of the year was the sundance this year in 1975?

A. The first week of August.

Q. Is that usually when it was?

A. Yes.

Q. So were you there just for the sundance, or were you

camping there also?

A. We were there camping for the sundance.

Q. How long did you stay at Crow Dog’s?

A. Maybe a week.

Q. Camp there the whole time?

A. Yes.

Q. Where were you living permanently at that time?

A. Our residence had been Oglala before that.

Q. So you still had the home in Oglala?

A. Well, at the time then we were just camping because our

home had been pretty much destroyed after the shoot-out.

Q. So the sundance took place in August you said?

A. Yes.

Q. You were there for about a week or so, is that what you

said?

A. Yeah, we camped about a week.

Q. Where did you go after that?

A. To Colorado.

Q. Why did you go to Colorado?

A. Because we were hiding from the government.

Q. When you say we went to Colorado, who went?

A. Dennis, Leonard Peltier, myself, my sister Barbara Roubideau.

Q. Did Dennis Banks go back for his sentencing at Custer?

A. No.

Q. Is that why you were hiding in Colorado?

A. Yes.

Q. I call your attention to September 5, 1975. Were you

still in Colorado, or were you back by then?

A. No, we left the day before.

Q. Had you returned to South Dakota from Colorado prior to

that — let me back up. How long were you in Colorado?

A. For a few weeks.

Q. After you left Colorado, where did you go?

A. To Parmalee, South Dakota.

Q. When did you go to Parmalee?

A. Maybe the middle of September, before the end of September.

Q. Were you back in South Dakota at all prior to September

5th of 1975?

A. I don’t think so. Well, September 5th is when he was

supposed to be sentenced.

Q. Where were you at on September 4th?

A. At Crow Dog’s.

Q. So you were still at Crow Dog’s for the sundance?

A. Yes, we left Crow Dog’s the day before he was to be sentenced.

Q. So the sundance I thought you said was in August, but

you were still there at the first part of September?

A. Yes.

Q. How do you remember that you left on September 4th?

A. Because part of Dennis’, the conditions were that he

needed to call in every day to the Sheriff’s office and report

while we were there. So he used to call in every day, and

then the day before sentencing, the night before he said that

he wasn’t calling the next day and we were leaving.

Q. So you left, and is that when you left for Colorado

then?

A. Yes.

Q. I am sorry, I was confused. So did you hear of anything

happening on September 5th then?

MR. RENSCH: Objection, hearsay, confrontation

clause, 403, and relevance.

MR. McMAHON: I will rephrase it. Your Honor.

THE COURT: Very well.

BY MR. McMAHON:

Q. Did you hear of a law enforcement raid at Crow Dog’s on

September 5th?

A. Yes. Can I say that it was August 5th is when Dennis

was supposed to report actually. I am sorry.

Q. We are confused here again, let’s go back. What day was

he supposed to report for sentencing?

A. August 5th.

Q. What day did you leave for Colorado?

A. August 4th.

Q. So then when did you return from Colorado?

A. Then toward the end of August.

Q. So you were back in South Dakota then after you came

back from Colorado?

A. Yes.

Q. Where did you come to after?

A. To Parmalee.

Q. So that’s when you went to Parmalee?

A. Yes.

Q. How long were you at Parmalee?

A. A couple of weeks.

Q. You were around the Pine Ridge Reservation and Rosebud

Reservation then at that time?

A. Yes.

Q. When did you leave again?

A. Soon after September 5th.

Q. So you were where on September 5th of 1975?

A. I was in Pine Ridge.

Q. And where is Parmalee in relationship to Leonard Crow Dog’ s ?

A. Maybe thirty miles away. It is not far.

Q. Did you become aware of a law enforcement raid at Crow

Dog’s on September 5th?

A. Yes.

Q. What did you find out had happened on that day?

A. That they had come and raided his property and several

people had been arrested.

Q. Who had been arrested?

A. Anna Mae, Leroy Casados, Dino Butler.

Q. You said you left again shortly after September 5th. Do

you remember what day that would have been?

A. It was just the next day, it was soon after. It was a

few days after, because once we went back to Parmalee we

stayed there for a few days, and then Bob Roubideau suggested

we leave because there were a lot of helicopters and stuff

flying around.

Q. So did you leave South Dakota then?

A. Yes.

Q. Who did you leave with?

A. It was Bob, my sister, Keith DeMarias, Norman Charles,

Jean Roach, and myself and my daughter.

Q. Was Dennis Banks with you?

A. No.

Q. Where had he gone?

A. I am not sure where he was at the moment.

Q. Where were you heading?

A. To Oklahoma.

Q. Where in Oklahoma?

A. Shawnee.

Q. Is that where your aunt lives?

A. Yes.

Q. What happened on the way?

A. While we were traveling, at night we left the Rosebud or

Parmalee at night, we were having trouble with our muffler on

our car, so we stopped in Valentine and we had the muffler

checked, and we kept driving and the next day we were on the

Kansas Turnpike by Wellington.

MR. RENSCH: At this point I object to relevance,

she is narrating, also 403 as it relates to this case.

THE COURT: Overruled.

A. And we were driving down the Interstate, and our car

started smoking, and we pulled over, and we all jumped out of

the car and it exploded.

Q. The car exploded?

A. Yes.

Q. Why did it explode?

A. Because there was dynamite in there.

Q. You were carrying dynamite?

A. Yes.

Q. Did you get arrested?

A. Yes.

Q. Were you taken to jail?

A. Yes.

Q. Where at?

A. In Wichita.

Q. How long were you in jail?

A. About three weeks,

Q. Then did you get bonded out?

A. Yes.

Q. Where did you go after you bonded out?

A. Tulsa, Oklahoma.

Q. Where did you go from there?

A. I came back to South Dakota.

Q. Why did you come back to South Dakota?

A. My Grandma was having a memorial dinner for my uncle.

Q. The uncle that was killed at Wounded Knee?

A. Yes.

Q. When was it that you came back to South Dakota for that

memorial?

A. In October.

Q. Did you have an occasion to meet up with Dennis Banks

again then?

A. Yes.

Q. How did that come about?

A. I was at the dinner which he had held at Wounded Knee,

it was outside. A couple people came over to me and said to

me that when it is over that I just needed to go with them.

Q. Did you do that then?

A. Yes.

Q. Where did you go?

A. To Oglala.

Q. Where did you go in Oglala?

A. To the Hill house.

Q. Who was there?

A. It was Dennis and Leonard and Dave Hill and then me.

Q. Dennis Banks?

A. Yes.

Q. Leonard Peltier?

A. Yes.

Q. Dave Hill you said?

A. Yes.

Q. And Anna Mae?

A. Yes.

Q. What did you do then?

A. It was in, it was late already, we got there and Dave

and Leonard took Anna Mae in to the adjoining room and they

were making her make bombs.

Q. Why were they doing that?

A. For the sake of the fingerprints being on the bomb.

Q. What was going do be done with the bombs?

A. There was discussion about where these bombs would be

placed in Pine Ridge.

Q. Were they placed somewhere then?

A. Yes.

Q. Were you there when they placed them?

A. Yes.

Q. Who placed the bombs?

MR. RENSCH: Objection, relevance, 403.

THE COURT: Overruled.

A. Dave Hill and Leonard got out of the car and told Anna

Mae to get out with them, and they laid the bombs by the two

power plants in Pine Ridge.

BY MR. McMAHON:

Q. Where did you go from there?

A. To Chadron, Nebraska.

Q. Why did you go to Chadron?

A. There was a motor home there that we were going to pick up.

Q. Did you pick up the motor home?

A. Yes.

Q. Did you travel in the motor home then?

A. Yes.

Q. Who was in the motor home?

A. It was Leonard Peltier, Dennis, my sister, my daughter,

Anna Mae, Kenny Loud Hawk, and Dave Hill.

Q. Why was Anna Mae along?

A. I think Anna Mae was there because Dennis and Leonard

were watching her.

Q. Where did you go?

A. We traveled to Montana, but we spent a couple days

because the weather was really bad, we couldn’t travel, and

then we went to Washington state.

Q. Where did you go in Washington state?

A. To John Chiquiti’s.

Q. Was that a friend?

A. Yes.

Q. Did he have a ranch, or a home, or something there?

A. He owned a home that was isolated out in the country.

Q. Did you camp there?

A. Yes.

Q. How long did you stay there?

A. Probably a few weeks.

Q. Who was camping there?

A. Dennis, Leonard, my sister and myself, my daughter, Anna

Mae, Kenny Loud Hawk.

Q. Were you there because you were hiding?

A. Yes.

Q. Did you ever leave there with your sister?

A. Her and I had court in Kansas, and we left at one point

and we flew back for the court hearing, and she decided to

stay there, so I returned to Washington.

Q. While you were camping in Washington state, was Anna Mae

allowed to leave by herself?

A. No.

Q. Was she always being watched?

A. Somebody always went around with her.

Q. Were there any allegations or accusations made toward

her while were you camping in Washington state?

A. Yes.

Q. Who made those?

A. Leonard.

Q. Did you hear him?

A. Yes.

Q. What did he say?

MR. RENSCH: Objection, hearsay.

THE COURT: I am sorry, what?

MR. RENSCH: Hearsay.

THE COURT: It is hearsay. It is not received for

the truth of the matter stated, but with that limitation it is

received into evidence. You may answer.

BY MR. McMAHON:

Q. What did Mr. Peltier say?

A. He said that he believed she was a fed, and that he was

going to get some truth serum and give it to her so that she

would tell the truth.

Q. While you were camping in Washington, were there any

discussions had in which you and Anna Mae were present in

which sensitive material that you wouldn’t have wanted in the

hands of law enforcement was discussed?

A. Yes.

Q. Give me an example?

MR. RENSCH: Objection, hearsay.

THE COURT: Overruled.

A. We were sitting one day at the table in this motor home.

Anna Mae was sitting by me and my sister was on the other

side, and Dennis was standing in the aisle, and Leonard was

sitting on this side, he alternated between sitting and

standing. And he started talking about June 26, and he put

his hand like this and started talking about the two FBI

agents.

Q. What did he say?

MR. RENSCH: Objection, more prejudicial than

probative. And hearsay.

THE COURT: Well, that is overruled. But what he

said is hearsay, but it is received not for the truth of the

matter stated, received only for a limited purpose, go ahead.

BY MR. McMAHON:.

Q. Tell the Court as best you remember exactly what he said?

A. Exactly what he said.

Q. Exactly what he said?

A. He said the motherfucker was begging for his life, but I

shot him anyway.

Q. Had you ever heard that before?

A. No.

Q. Where did you go when you left Washington?

A. We started traveling south on the Interstate.

Q. Would that take you in to Oregon?

A. Yes.

Q. What happened when you got in to Oregon?

A. We got stopped by the Highway Patrol.

Q. What happened when you were stopped by the Highway Patrol?

MR. RENSCH: Same series of objections, more

prejudicial than probative, relevance, and 403.

THE COURT: Overruled.

A. They made us, it was one officer, and he made us get out

of the motor home.

Q. Did everyone get out of the motor home?

A. No.

Q. Who stayed in?

A. Dennis.

Q. What did he do?

A. He drove away.

Q. What happened after that?

A. He started shooting him, him and the officer were

shooting at each other as he was driving away.

Q. Did he get away?

A. Yes.

Q. Where was Mr. Peltier?

A. He initially was laying beside me on the ground.

Q. What did he do?

A. He started running for the fence, and the officer shot

him as he was going over the fence and he ran away.

Q. So did he get away too?

A. Yes.

Q. What happened to the rest of you?

A. We went to jail.

Q. That would have been you?

A. It was myself and Anna Mae, Kenny Loud Hawk and Russell

Red Earth, and my daughter.

Q. Who did you share a jail cell with?

A. Anna Mae.

Q. You had testified earlier that the two of you hadn’t had

much contact. Did that last up until the time that you were

in that motor home together?

A. Until the night I saw her at Loud Hawk’s.

Q. Now you were in a cell together?

A. Yes.

Q. So when you were in the cell together did you have an

occasion to visit with each other?

A. Yes.

Q. What was Anna Mae’s state of mind at that time?

A. She was upset. She was crying. She was afraid, but she

was, I knew what she was afraid of, because I knew she had

already been arguing with the cops up to that point, telling

them they should, while we were in the ditch they should put

me in the car because I was pregnant, I had a little girl, it

was cold outside. So she wasn’t afraid of them, but yet she

was scared, and I knew that she was scared of Leonard and

Dennis at that point.

(Exhibit 27 marked For identification.)

BY MR. McMAHON:

Q. I would like you to look at that picture I just put in

front of you. Would you look at the number on the back and

tell me what the Exhibit No. is, please?

A. 27.

Q. What is that a picture of?

A. Anna Mae.

Q. Is that what she looked like when you were arrested in

Oregon?

A. Yes.

Q. Do you know when she cut her hair?

A. No.

Q. How long were the two of you in jail together?

A. Probably a couple of weeks.

Q. Where were the two of you taken after you left jail?

A. They put us on a plane and they flew us back to Wichita

together, and the Marshals came and met us at the airport, and

they took me back to jail and they brought her to South Dakota.

Q. Why did they take you back to jail?

A. Because I wasn’t supposed to have left Kansas and I had

traveled back to Washington. So when I got arrested in

Washington they returned me back to Kansas.

Q. Do you know why Anna Mae was brought to South Dakota?

A. Because there was a bench warrant on her up here.

Q. Was that stemming from the September 5th arrest?

A. Yes.

Q. Did you ever see Anna Mae alive again?

A. No.

Q. When did you find out she was dead?

A. On February 24th.

Q. Would you like some water?

A. Thank you.

Q. How do you remember it was February 24th?

A. Because Dennis called me.

Q. Dennis Banks?

A. Yes.

Q. How did you relate that call to the date of February 24th?

A. Because he was in San Francisco, I was in Portland,

Oregon. We had, in the house we lived was our office, and

when he called I was sitting at the desk and I was speaking to

him before he told me this, I looked at the calendar and it

was my nephew’s birthday, and I was remembering it was my

nephew’s birthday and I needed to call him, and Dennis told me

they had found Anna Mae.

Q. That’s February 24, 1976?

A. Yes.

Q. You testified earlier that you and Mr. Banks were no

longer together?

A. Right.

Q. I don’t remember if I asked you what year was it that

you separated?

A. April of 1989.

Q. How many children did you have together?

A. Four.

Q. At some point in time did you decide to cooperate with

the law enforcement people in their investigation of Anna

Mae’s death?

A. Yes.

Q. Why did you decide to do that?

A. Because I believed that from the day he called me I

started always believing that it was the American Indian

Movement that had something to do with it, because of the

conversations I had heard throughout the time before I got

arrested. And I came here that summer, and I was in the area

for four months and in that time I visited different people I

learned what happened to her.

Q. How did it come about that you got in contact with law

enforcement people about this?

A. We contacted Jim Graf and had a meeting with him in

Minneapolis.

Q. Was this your idea, or did the FBI contact you?

A. They didn’t contact me, I called them.

Q. So you voluntarily came forward?

A. Yes.

Q. What types of things have you done besides tell what you

knew about what happened, what else have you done to help in

the investigation of this matter?

A. I have talked to several people that were involved in

Anna Mae’s death.

Q. Did you talk to Troy Lynn Yellow Wood at any time?

A. Yes.

Q. Did you record that conversation with the help of the FBI?

A. Yes.

Q. Did you have an occasion then to visit with the

defendant Arlo Looking Cloud and Troy Lynn Yellow Wood?

A. Yes.

Q. Was that a separate occasion?

A. Yes.

Q. Did you record that conversation with the help of the FBI?

A. Yes, I did.

MR. McMAHON: Your Honor, at this time I would like

to stop my questioning and recall her at a later time to go in

to that portion of it.

THE COURT: Very well. Do you wish to examine at

this time with regard to this testimony, or do you want to

reserve your examination until the testimony is completed?

MR. RENSCH: I would like to examine at this time if

I could, Your Honor, relative to what she has said thus far.

THE COURT: Very well.

CROSS EXAMINATION BY MR. RENSCH:

Q. Ma’am, if I ask you a question that appears or seems to

be confusing, would you stop me so that we can understand each

other?

A. Yes, I will.

Q. How old are you?

A. Forty-eight.

Q. What type of education do you have?

A. I graduated high school. I went to school in

California, I got an Associate of Arts degree in Native

American studies, and went on to school at UC Davis in California.

Q. What degree did you get there?

A. I was in my third year there when Dennis and I moved

because he was fighting extradition, we left and moved to New York.

Q. What do you do for a living?

A. I am a casting director, I work on movies.

Q. How long have you been a casting director?

A. Since June of 1989.

Q. How many movies have you worked on?

A. Maybe thirteen or fourteen.

Q. What are some of the movies you have worked on?

A. Pardon.

Q. What are some of the movies you have worked on?

A. I did casting on Dances With Wolves, I have worked on

Last of The Mohicans, I have worked on several TNT

productions. I worked on Mohammed Ali movie, I did casting

for some Tony Hillerman movies.

Q. In your job have you met movie stars?

A. Yeah.

Q. Who are some of the movie stars you have worked with?

A. Kevin Costner, I have met Gene Hackman, Daniel Jay

Lewis. Didn’t always meet the actors when they came to the

movies, sometimes they didn’t, just depended.

Q. In working with these movie sets and things of that

nature have you come to know the movie industry somewhat?

A. Yes.

Q. How so?

A. Well, I think I came to know it pretty well. It was

what I did.

Q. Did you ever come in to contact with writers in the

movie industry?

A. I know who the writers were, they didn’t always come to location.

Q. You have met some writers because of your occupation in

the movie industry, haven’t you?

A. I don’t know that I met them. Sometimes, you know. Tony

Hillerman came to our movie location, he wrote the book that

the movie is based on. A screen play has been rewritten, I

didn’t meet the people that wrote. He was there, I didn’t

make a point of meeting him. I didn’t make a point of meeting

the writer. They are not usually on location.

Q. So there is a person who writes the book that a movie is

made out of?

A. Pretty much.

Q. Then there is another person who writes the screen

adaptation to it, is that how it works?

A. No, the person writes the book and then there is the

person who changes it in to a script.

Q. Have you met people who have changed books in to scripts?

A. No.

Q. Do you know who those people are because of your being

involved in the movie industry?

A. If I looked on my crew list I might know who they are,

but I don’t. I work with the extras and the producer and the

director, so I don’t normally work with the writer, that is

not my job.

Q. You also know from being involved in the movie industry

that there is a lot of money to be made if a movie is

successful, isn’t that true?

A. If it is successful, yeah, I am sure.

Q. Millions and millions of dollars if it is successful, right?

A. Yeah.

Q. You worked on Dances With Wolves, isn’t that true?

A. Right.

Q. Tens of millions of dollars if a movie is successful,

isn’t that true?

A. I heard it is true.

Q. How much do you make a year right now?

A. It depends.

MR. McMAHON: Objection to relevance.

THE COURT: Sustained.

MR. RENSCH: Like an opportunity to make an offer of proof.

THE COURT: You can.

MR. RENSCH: Could we break now and do that, and I

could continue with this witness.

THE COURT: We are close enough to noon, we will do

that now. Remember what I told you before, don’t talk to each

other about the case, don’t do outside research, don’t talk to

each other, don’t make up your mind now, because you haven’t

heard all the evidence yet. We will be in recess until 1:15.

Please stand for the jury, counsel to stay.

(Jury Leaves).

THE COURT: Out of the presence of the jury.

MR. RENSCH: May I ask some questions in the form of

an offer of proof, Your Honor?

THE COURT: Yes.

MR. RENSCH: How much money do you make in a year,

Ma’ am.

A. It depends on the movie and the budget of the movie, it differs.

Q. Let’s talk about the year 2003, how much money did you

make in 2003?

A. I am only trying to remember which movie it was, I am sorry.

Q. Just the whole year, 2003, all the money that you made?

A. Probably not very much that year.

Q. Well, are we talking, can you give us a ballpark on an amount ?

A. Okay, we are talking about last year.

Q. Yes.

A. Probably only about maybe $20,000.

Q. And in the five years prior to that time what is the

most you made in any one year?

A. Maybe thirty five.

Q. $35,000?

A. Maybe.

MR. RENSCH: Your Honor, at this point I would rely

on this as an offer of proof and request the opportunity to

inquire about it in front of the jury to establish a possible

bias in the testimony in light of the fact that there is a

great deal of money that can be made if one were to write a

book or write a screen play about this subject which has so

very much interest in our country, and from that standpoint it

could color her testimony. In support of that I would tell

the Court that it is the theory of the defense that these

matters, well, should be brought in to question. And the

motivation for testifying has been opened by the government in

its direct examination by asking why did you come in and tell

the FBI these things, and from that standpoint her bias would

go into the theory of the defense, and we would request an

opportunity to use this information to secure my client’s fair

trial rights, his right to confront and cross examine a

witness, and his due process rights.

THE COURT: Well, what does the government have to

say about that?

MR. McMAHON: Your Honor, he has laid no foundation

that she is going to make one nickel off of this. Anybody

that is sitting in the courtroom can write a book. It is

totally fictitious, and it is just a smoke screen, if you

will. He has made no connection whatsoever with her

employment and the fact that she decided to come forward and

tell what she knows about a murder case.

THE COURT: Alright.

THE WITNESS: Can I say something.

MR. McMAHON: No, unless the Judge wants you to.

THE COURT: You can if you want to. I am ready to

rule, but you can if you want to.

THE WITNESS: That I now need to change my career

and look for further different employment, because casting is

not something that I would be able to do from this point on.

THE COURT: Why is that?

THE WITNESS: Because I have come forward with this information.

THE COURT: Alright, thank you. Well, first of all,

frankly, counsel for the defense, I don’t think you knew what

the answers were going to be. Of course that is

understandable because you don’t get the benefit of

depositions in a criminal case like you do in a civil case,

and so I think we had a little discovery that went on here as

to what she earned. I think you thought the figures would be

a lot bigger. So to argue that she is going to write a book,

well, casting doesn’t have anything to do with writing, and it

hasn’t been shown she has any ability to write a book. If she

were going to, she could have before this. So I don’t think

that — you know, you can certainly inquire in to her motive

in front of the jury for coming forward, but I think this one

is a wild goose chase. You can go in to motive, but I don’t

think you have shown anything here. So your offer of proof is

received, but I don’t think it has established anything.

Anything further?

MR. RENSCH: Not from me.

MR. McMAHON: Not from me, Your Honor.

THE COURT: We will be in recess until 1:15.

(Recess from 12:00 until 1:15).

THE COURT: Please be seated. Since we have been

talking about hearsay a little bit, and so for the guidance of

counsel and for the record, as to the general talk or

knowledge at Farmington, New Mexico at the AIM convention,

that Anna Mae Aquash was being considered by the AIM members

there generally to be a fed or an informer, and Ms. Nichols

was in the middle of all that as she was with Mr. Banks, as

well as apparently active in her own right at that time. Now

that’s not hearsay, although I have limited its use, but then

from what the government claims they are going to prove, the

specific things said to the deceased Anna Mae Aquash by

persons other than the defendant, those go to, as I see it,

the decedent’s state of mind, and ultimately whether Anna Mae

Aquash voluntarily went from Denver to Rapid City, stayed in

Rapid City, then to Rosebud, then on to Pine Ridge where she

was murdered. And given that they were all riding in a little

Ford Pinto during all of that time, what she would have

manifested is relevant and material, but I am going to read

now from an October 9, 2003 Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals

opinion. United States versus Malik, M-A-L-I-K. It is 345

F.3rd 999, the case starts, and at page 1001 the Court said

Malik contends the statement of the informant relayed to the

jury through the testimony of the police officers were

hearsay, highly prejudicial and not relevant. “When the

out-of-court statement has relevance when we only consider the

effect it had on those who heard or read it, not whether the

statement was true or not, but just its effect on those who

heard it, then the statement is not hearsay.” That’s G.

Michael Fenner, THE HEARSAY RULE 31, 2003, that book. See

also Federal Rules of Evidence 801. For example, an out of

court statement is not hearsay if it is offered, not for the

truth of the matter asserted, but instead to explain the

reasons for or propriety of a police investigation. So bring

in the jury, please.

MR. RENSCH: May I say something.

THE COURT: Yes.

MR. RENSCH: I would like to indicate to the Court

that I am going to in cross examination delve in to some of

the areas I objected to, and the reason for that is I have to

delve in to those, and I would like the opportunity to do so

without waiving my objections to the previous evidentiary

objections on that.

THE COURT: Is that a statement, or a question?

MR. RENSCH: A little bit of both. I just want a

spot I can cite to to preserve in the record the reason I am

going to be asking certain questions that deal with the

matters I have objected to are because I have to deal with

those now, and I don’t want to waive any appellate right.

THE COURT: Well, that’s your choice. I mean there

is no objection before me, and what ever you do with your

record, you know, that’s up to you. I thank you for the

information, but that is all there is to it.

MR. RENSCH: Thank you, Your Honor.

THE COURT: Alright, bring in the jury, please.

(Jury Enters)

THE COURT: You may proceed.

BY MR. RENSCH:

Q. Ms. Nichols, as of September of last year isn’t it true

that you had received approximately $24,000 in moneys or

services from the government in this case?

A. Yes.

Q. And you have also been told that living expenses for you

will be paid for a period of time into the future, is that not so?

A. No.

Q. How much money have you received so far in the year 2004

from the federal government in connection with your

cooperation in this case?

A. $25,000.

Q. This year you have, the year 2004?

A. 2004, yes.

Q. How did you receive that, was it by way of a check?

A. It was in my bank.

Q. Is $25,000 a lot of money to you?

A. No.

Q. It is not a lot of money to you?

A. Because in the business I work in I can make that kind

of money in a couple of months.

Q. How long does it take you to make $25,000?

A. Well, when I worked on a big budget movie if my salary

is $2,200 a week, then it takes a couple of months.

Q. Last year, for example, were you employed the entire time?

A. No.

Q. How many movies did you work on last year?

A. Two.

Q. How much did you make on each one?

A. Total, they pay you per contract, it was only $9,000.

There that was for PBS.

Q. Was that for each movie you worked on, or was that total

what you made?

A. That was total.

Q. So if it takes you a year to make $9,000, it seems to me

that $25,000 would be quite a lot of money, would you agree?

A. No.

Q. Do you value having $25,000?

A. Well, it covers expenses to where I needed to move to.

Q. Have you taken any steps to write a book or anything like that?

A. No.

Q. Do you have an agent ?

A. No.

Q. Have you contacted somebody to possibly be your agent in

the future?

A. No.

Q. Do you have plans to write a book?

A. No.

Q. Do you have plans to sell your story?

A. No.

Q. Could plans change at some point in the future do you think?

A. No.

MR. McMAHON: I object, speculation.

THE COURT: I will let the answer stand. Ask your

next question, overruled.

BY MR. RENSCH:

Q. How many children do you have, Ma’am?

A. Four.

Q. These are children you had with Mr. Dennis Banks?

A. Yes.

Q. How old are they?

A. 19, 23, 28 and 29.

Q. And you were with Mr. Banks from what, 1972 to about 1989?

A. Yes.

Q. Did you love him?

A. Initially.

Q. How long did you live with him without loving him?

A. About three years.

Q. So you loved him until about 1986?

A. Yes.

Q. Do you have a criminal record of any sort?

A. At the moment I can apply for a job and put no.

Q. Have you ever been convicted of a felony?

A. Yes.

Q. How many times?

A. Once.

Q. How long ago?

A. In 1976 or ’77.

Q. Is that something that you, does that arise out of some

of these acts you testified to on direct?

A. Yes.

Q. Which one of them?

A. From when our car blew up in Kansas I was charged with

possession of firearms. I was on probation for three years.

Q. Were you charged in Federal Court or in State Court?

A. I think federal.

Q. Has anybody talked to you about helping you get that off

of your record in connection with this case?

A. You mean the charges from back in 1976?

Q. Yes.

A. It was already removed from my record when I completed

the probation. I was under 23 and they told me then the law

says that when you complete your probation without any

violations your record is expunged?

Q. And you were good friends with Ms. Pictou-Aquash,

weren’t you?

A. Yes.

Q. The best of friends?

A. She was a very good friend of mine.

Q. You have told people that she was your best friend in

the past, have you not?

A. She was when she lived with me.

Q. What year was it that she lived with you?

A. In 1974.

Q. 1974. Okay. In 1974 you loved your husband Dennis

Banks, didn’t you?

A. Yes.

Q. Now what year did you learn then that Ms. Pictou-Aquash

was having a sexual relationship with your husband?

A. In 1975.

Q. What month?

A. June.

Q. That would have been approximately the time of the

Farmington, New Mexico matter, is that right?

A. Yes.

Q. You were angry with Ms. Pictou-Aquash, weren’t you?

A. When I learned about it I was.

Q. That hurt you when you found out that your best friend

would have sex with your husband, didn’t it?

A. Yes.

Q. Is it funny?

A. No. I mean it would hurt anybody I think, so it didn’t

just hurt me.

Q. Were you angry at your husband for that too?

A. Yes.

Q. As you went on through your relationship with Mr. Banks

and you continued being married to him, did this situation

with Ms. Pictou-Aquash still bother you?

A. At different times.

Q. The fact that she was with your husband?

A. Yes.

Q. In fact, it bothered you up to 1986, didn’t it?

A. No, probably not that long.

Q. Do you hate your husband, your ex-husband Dennis Banks?

A. No.

Q. Do you want to hurt him?

A. No. He is just the father of my children.

Q. You would never want to do anything that would hurt the

father of your children?

A. I would never do anything that would hurt him because he

is the father of my children.

Q. Of course if were you to hurt him, that would hurt your

children, would you agree?

A. Pretty much.

Q. So you wouldn’t want to do anything to hurt him because

it could hurt your kids?

A. My children are, have been my life since I have had them.

Q. Is there a part of you that wants to use

Ms. Pictou-Aquash to hurt your husband?

A. No.

Q. The way that he hurt you?

A. No.

Q. By using her?

A. No.

Q. You went into your husband’s house wearing a wire and

questioned him about these matters, didn’t you?

A. We never discussed Anna Mae.

Q. You went into his house wearing a wire to record what he

said, didn’t you?

A. Nothing about Anna Mae.

Q. Did you wear a wire to record what he said?

A. Yes.

Q. When did you do that?

A. In October I think of 2002.

Q. Now back when you were with Dennis Banks in the early

seventies, let’s start with 1972, that was a volatile time for

the American Indian Movement, wasn’t it?

A. Yes.

Q. You saw many things that were crimes, didn’t you?

A. In 1972?

Q. The early seventies?

A. No.

Q. How about 1975, did you witness any crimes in 1975?

A. Just that I traveled with them and we were fugitives.

Q. You told the jury that you were present when some bombs

were placed by the power plant in Pine Ridge?

A. Yes.

Q. We can agree that’s probably a crime?

A. Yes.

Q. You were present when people were making

Ms. Pictou-Aquash make bombs, weren’t you?

A. Yes.

Q. You helped make bombs, didn’t you?

A. No.

Q. You never touched them?

A. I never touched those bombs.

Q. You never touched any bombs?

A. I touched a piece of dynamite that was not attached to a bomb.

Q. What were you doing that for?

A. Because Leonard was teaching us how to make the bombs.

Q. When you were in the American Indian Movement and when

you saw these things, you didn’t go to the police and tell

anyone about them, did you?

A. No.

Q. Why not?

A. Well, at the time I was committed to the Movement, and I

believed in what the movement stood for at the moment.

Q. What happens if you disagreed with what was going on,

could you keep quiet about things?

A. What happens if I disagreed right then?

Q. Yes.

A. I never talked to anybody about anything.

Q. So in the American Indian Movement in 1975 when you

would see something that was illegal or that you didn’t agree

with, you would keep quiet, wouldn’t you?

A. Yes.

Q. Because you can’t always know how people are going to

react if you say something, isn’t that true?

A. I just didn’t talk about it, didn’t think about what

people were going to react to.

Q. It could be dangerous if you would have tried to step in

and change things as they were occurring for you back then,

couldn’t it?

A. I never thought about stepping in to change anything

back then.

Q. In the motor home incident up in Oregon, is it your

testimony to this jury that Ms. Aquash was basically being

held captive that whole time?

A. She, when she traveled to the store she was always with

somebody, if she went shopping she was with somebody. She was

never alone.

Q. Well, were you with her when she was away?

A. I never traveled with her to the store.

Q. So if you were not with her when she was away, how do

you know whether or not she was left alone?

A. Because my sister was with her.

Q. And was your sister sent to be along with her to keep an

eye on her?

A. My sister and Leonard traveled with her to the store.

Q. What is your sister’s name?

A. Bernie Nichols.

Q. Did you ever have to watch Anna Mae during this time?

A. No.

Q. You never had to keep an eye on her at all?

A. No.

Q. And it is your position before this jury that she wanted

to get away and no one would let her go, is that right?

A. She told my sister she asked to go home and they told

her she couldn’t.

Q. Well, were you there when she said that?

A. No.

Q. So you don’t know for sure if she said that, do you?

A. My sister told me.

Q. But your sister was one of the people who was watching

her, wasn’t she?

A. My sister was traveling with her. They never directly

said to my sister we are going to go to the store and you keep

an eye on her.

Q. No one ever directly said to you that someone was to

keep on eye on Ms. Pictou-Aquash, isn’t that true?

A. No, it was never said to me.

Q. And you never heard anyone other than your sister

recount possibly what Ms. Pictou said other than her, you

never heard anyone tell another person to make sure to keep an

eye on Ms. Pictou-Aquash, did you?

A. Not in Washington.

Q. Okay. Did you at any point out there on the West Coast

hear anybody say that they should keep an eye on

Ms. Pictou-Aquash?

A. No, they just did. She was never alone.

Q. No one told you that they were keeping an eye on

Ms. Pictou-Aquash for any reason, did they?

A. No.

Q. So when you tell this jury they were keeping an eye on

her so that she couldn’t leave, you are making an assumption,

aren’t you?

A. If that is what I believe, I believe that that is what

was going on.

Q. You are telling us what you believe, right?

A. Yes.

Q. But you are not telling us that you observed that, are you?

A. I never observed that.

Q. As you were watching what happened out there as you are

with these fugitives, and you yourself were a fugitive,

weren’t you?

A. When I was in Washington state?

Q. Yes?

A. Yes.

Q. Okay, meaning you missed a court appearance?

A. Right.

Q. You were on the federal firearms charges, or explosives charges?

A. Right.

Q. So at this time you were a fugitive. During that period

of time did you believe then that she was being held captive?

A. I believed that she would not have been, if Dennis and

Leonard didn’t want her to be there.

Q. I appreciate that’s what you believe, but my question to

you is did you believe that she was being held captive as you

were with her out there and you were all in the motor home?

A. She was never tied up or anything in that capacity of

being captive.

Q. Did you believe that she was being held prisoner, or her

freedom of movement was being restricted as you were with her

during that time period?

A. I think if she wanted to leave there would have been an

incident.

Q. Were there any instructions given to anybody in your

presence about what would happen if she tried to leave?

A. No.

Q. Did you ever see her try to leave?

A. No.

Q. Did you ever see her make any phone calls asking someone

to come and pick her up?

A. No.

Q. Did she ever ask you for help in trying to leave?

A. No.

Q. During this period of time were you her friend?

A. Yes.

Q. But during this period of time you thought she wouldn’t

have been able to leave if she wanted to, correct?

A. I think if she tried to leave something would have come up.

Q. With all that in mind, you also tell this jury that your

husband at that time felt she was an informant, is that true?

A. I believe that.

Q. And you have also told this jury that Leonard Peltier

felt that she was an informant, isn’t that true?

A. Yes.

Q. And these are dangerous people, aren’t they. Banks and Peltier?

A. Once Leonard made the disclosure, then, yeah, I realized

what he had done, then, yeah, you could say he was a dangerous

person.

Q. And if he thought that somebody was not with him, is it

your testimony to this jury that they could be in danger?

A. If they were not with him?

Q. Yeah, if they were an informant against him?

A. Yeah.

Q. So as he said that, did you think that Ms. Pictou-Aquash

was in danger from him while you were all in the motor home together?

A. I realized she was scared once we left.

Q. Did you do anything to help Ms. Pictou-Aquash in her

predicament in the motor home?

A. We were living in the motor home.

Q. I know. Did you do anything to make it so that she

could leave?

A. No.

Q. Why not?

A. She never asked to leave.

Q. Did you do anything prior to the time that you found out

that she was dead to help her in any way in light of the fact

that people thought she was an informant?

A. No.

Q. Why not?

A. Because I didn’t know who did this to her.

Q. But you have told us that as you were married to him you

had an idea that your husband did this to her?

A. I assumed that he knew who did this to her.

Q. And you assumed that when he told you that a body had

been found on February 24, isn’t that correct?

A. He told me it was Anna Mae that had been found on

February 24.

Q. It was at that point you put the two and two together,

is that right?

A. That’s when I started thinking about it.

Q. At that point did you do anything at all to alert

anybody about your suspicions?

A. No.

Q. Is part of that because when you are in the American

Indian Movement and things go wrong around you, it could be

dangerous if you go talk about it?

A. Would I feel danger if I killed somebody, is that what

you mean?

Q. No. My question is part of the reason you didn’t try to

help the authorities in finding the perpetrator of this murder

because you were afraid that if you talked you could be in

trouble yourself?

A. I never thought about going to talk to somebody. I was

going to school at the time, I was raising my children, that

was my priority.

Q. Back in the AIM days in say 1975, people who were

involved in AIM, if they saw things happen that could be

considered illegal, was it your experience that they would go

tell the authorities about those things?

A. I knew Doug Durham had gone to the authorities, but he

is the only person I knew about.

Q. Doug Durham was a paid FBI operative, though, wasn’t he?

A. Yeah.

Q. Other than the FBI operatives who were planted in the

American Indian Movement as moles, was it your experience that

the members would go talk to the authorities about crimes that

they may have observed?

A. I never knew anybody that went to the authorities.

Q. If somebody went to the authorities after observing

something, they could be in trouble, couldn’t they, would you

agree with that?

A. Well, I don’t know that.

Q. When were you in Custer when you heard Leonard Crow Dog

say that Anna Mae was an informant and that she could be

kicked out of the place?

A. While Dennis, it was in July while Dennis was on trial

up there.

Q. Of 1975?

A. Yes.

Q. Leonard Crow Dog you are telling this jury then in July

of 1975 didn’t want Ms. Pictou-Aquash anywhere near him

because he thought she was a fed, is that right?

A. He said he didn’t want her near him or on his property.

Q. Yet she was arrested on his property on September 5th,

was she not?

A. No.

Q. Where was she on September 5th?

A. She was at Diane and Al Runnings property.

Q. Was she ever at Crow Dog’s property after that?

A. I don’t know, she wasn’t with me.

Q. But you were at Crow Dog’s property for a period of time

after that, weren’t you?

A. I went there, that’s where we were for the sundance.

Q. What was it she was arrested for on September 5th, do

you know?

A. I don’t know.

MR. RENSCH: Nothing further at this time.

THE COURT: Any redirect examination on these

points?

MR. McMAHON: Yes, Your Honor.

REDIRECT EXAMINATION BY MR. McMAHON:

Q. Ms. Nichols, since it was brought up, would you tell the

jury exactly how much you have received in financial

assistance from the federal government total?

A. $42,000.

Q. Was part of that for your expenses for traveling?

A. Well, when I found this information out in 2000 and I

would travel around, like when I went to visit Troy Lynn in

Denver, I paid all my own expenses, and there was actually

several months before I asked could I get reimbursed, and I

would send them my receipts and for that I got reimbursed, but

I initially put up my own money.

Q. In addition to that have there been two lump sum

payments made to you?

A. Yes.

Q. What were they for?

A. A year ago I was contacted about my security and my

safety, and we discussed where I lived, and that I maybe

needed to move to a more secure location in New Mexico, so it

was for that.

Q. So the first payment was to move you to the secured location?

A. Right.

Q. Because of your involvement in this case?

A. Yes.

Q. What was the second lump sum payment for?

A. Well, Dennis Banks learned where I lived the first time,

so it was to move to a different location.

Q. So that was for the same reason?

A. Yes.

Q. You were asked some questions about whether you had seen

any crimes committed and then failed to report them. Did you

ever help tie anyone up?

A. No.

Q. You ever help haul anyone around the country side tied up?

A. No.

Q. Did you ever stand there while somebody was murdered?

A. No.

MR. McMAHON: That’s all I have.

RECROSS EXAMINATION BY MR. RENSCH:

Q. But you did hold dynamite that was going to be used to

blow something up, didn’t you.

A. No, I didn’t hold it.

Q. Then why did you plead guilty to possessing it?

A. Because that was the plea bargain arrangement that was made.

Q. And you did stand by while people placed bombs near

power plants, right?

A. I was in the car while they were placing them.

Q. But you didn’t do anything to help them plant those

bombs, did you?

A. No, I didn’t help them plant them.

Q. Because of that you didn’t do anything wrong in planting

the bombs, did you?

A. No, I was in the car.

MR. RENSCH: Thank you?

MR. McMAHON: Nothing further.

THE COURT: Thank you, you may step down. Call your

next witness.


jfamr.org document index

About Looking Back Woman-Suzanne Dupree

Tetuwan Lakota scholar, educator, historian, Sun Dance participant, Cannunpa carrier, cultural & spiritual preservationist, journalist-writer and fraud investigator.
This entry was posted in SPIRITUAL AWAKENING. Bookmark the permalink.

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