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Weathermen In Suicide Attack

By Scott W. Jacobs and John G. Short

(Special to the CRIMSON)

CHICAGO, Sat., Oct. 11-250 Weathermen made a suicidal charge through police lines into Chicago's downtown Loop today, smashing store windows and fighting police for fifteen minutes before they were rounded up. One Chicago city attorney was seriously injured; 103 Weathermen were arrested.

The window-breaking spree through a two-block section of Chicago's Madison St., the conclusion to four days of demonstrations, brought the total number of arrests to more than 250 and the number of police injured to 50.

Most seriously injured was Chicago asst. corporation counsel Richard J. Elrod, who had spent the four days on the street gathering information for prosecution of the arrested students. Elrod was paralyzed from the neck down Sunday after he was smashed against a wall and beaten with a pipe by one of the demonstrators, police said.

Brian D. Sullivan, 22, a student at Columbia University, was arrested and charged with attempted murder in the incident.

The fracas started as the Weathermen were staging a march with a heavy police escort from Haymarket Square to Grant Park as the finale to their "Bring the War Home" demonstrations.

The Weathermen began gathering in one corner of Haymarket Square around noon. Before the march started, however, plain clothed policemen filtered into the crowd and seized five Weathermen leaders, including Mark Rudd, national secretary, who was making his first public appearance during the disturbances.

Fake Beard

Wearing a heavy jacket and sporting a fake beard, Rudd mingled with the crowd, most of whom did not know who he was until he was arrested. Most of the Weathermen were helmet less and concealed their clubs and pipes under their jackets while assembling.

At 1:40 p.m., the Weathermen moved out, walking east down Randolph St. toward Lake Michigan at a rapid clip. Chants of "Power to the People" and "Off the Pig" resounded off the towering glass fronts of the Loop buildings.

The demonstrators turned down LaSalle St., still walking briskly behind their police motorcycle escorts. Then at Madison St. they charged away from the planned march route, catching Elrod and some 20 police officers off-guard.

Sticks and Stones

Tossing stones, bricks, pipes, and sticks through shop windows, the demonstrators overran any policemen who tried to stop them and ran rampant until a second police line formed two blocks away, trapping most of the people.

Chicago Saturday shoppers were stunned by the incident and many ducked into storefronts to avoid the shower of stones.

Herman Stein, owner of a jewelry store on Madison St. stood in the doorway of his shop with a pipe after demonstrators broke one of his windows.

"I'm just a defenseless store owner," he said. "Why people like us? We want the war to end too."


After the brief skirmish with police which lasted about 15 minutes, many demonstrators disappeared into the heavy crowds.

Some shed their leather jackets to reveal sports clothes, leaving their sticks on the sidewalk and tucking their helmets into shopping bags.

Street cleaners started mopping up the damage at 2:20 p.m. Window repairmen appeared about half an hour later. By Saturday afternoon, the surviving Weathermen were fleeing the state of Illinois.

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