The story of William O’Neal options prominently in the newly launched film Judas & the Black Messiah, which simply hit theaters and a few streaming providers and options the loss of life of Chicago Black Panthers chief Fred Hampton.
The film, which is predicated on actual life, tells the story of the life and loss of life of Hampton and the function William O’Neal, an FBI informant and one-time automotive thief, performed in all of it. It’s a real story; O’Neal actually was an FBI informant who gave the feds the ground plan to Hampton’s house, according to the Chicago Reader.
The Chicago Tribune called O’Neal a “key federal authorities informant who infiltrated the Black Panthers in the late Sixties.” Hampton and one other Black Panther chief, Mark Clark, have been killed throughout a regulation enforcement raid. Some contemplate it an assassination; the FBI director had instituted a counter intelligence motion in an try to interrupt the again of the Panthers and different revolutionary teams.
The film’s launch has some individuals questioning: What occurred to William O’Neal? Where is he at the moment?
O’Neal is not alive. He died after being run over by a automotive on January 15, 1990.
Here’s what you want to know:
O’Neal Took His Own Life on Martin Luther King Jr. Day
The story ended very tragically for all concerned. In the case of O’Neal, it was decided that he died of suicide. The Chicago Tribune reported in a 1990 story that the Cook County Medical Examiner had formally dominated O’Neal’s loss of life a suicide.
In 1990, shortly after O’Neal’s loss of life, the Chicago Reader wrote a story known as, “The Last Hours of William O’Neal.”
The Reader described how O’Neal was consuming beer along with his uncle Ben Heard on Martin Luther King Jr. day.
“We have been simply sitting round consuming beer,” Heard instructed The Reader, “speaking to some mates of mine. We had firm. The firm left and that is when he began appearing form of unusual.”
At 2:30 a.m., O’Neal, then 40, ran out of the house “throughout the westbound lanes of the Eisenhower Expressway, and was struck by a automotive and killed. His loss of life was dominated a suicide,” the Reader reported.
According to Heard, O’Neal “was endlessly tortured by the guilt.” Heard instructed The Reader that he heard the “deeply shaken driver say how O’Neal had jumped out in entrance of him waving his arms. He tried to swerve, nevertheless it was too late.”
The Tribune reported that O’Neal had run in entrance of a automotive earlier than however was solely injured that point.
O’Neal Was Living Under a False Name
According to the Tribune, O’Neal was residing below a brand new id – William Hart.
The Tribune reported that, in actual life, O’Neal ended up in the Federal Witness Protection Program in 1973 after infiltrating the Black Panther Movement. He was pinched as a automotive thief, which gave the FBI leverage over him, and he clearly grew to become a controversial determine when his actions have been revealed.
“He was all the time a mysterious man,” an official who knew him instructed The Tribune. “He may play all the roles, each half they (FBI brokers) wanted. I believe he by no means bought it out of his system and was confused.”
According to the Tribune, he spent a while residing in California. He got here again to Chicago about 4 years earlier than his loss of life.
In a 1989 interview with Eyes on the Prize, O’Neal was requested whether or not he felt remorse. He mentioned:
I did not really feel like I had finished something. I did not stroll in there with weapons. I did not shoot him. FBI did not do it. I felt considerably like I used to be betrayed. I felt like if anybody ought to have recognized it was going to be a raid that morning, I ought to have recognized, additionally. I felt like I may have been caught in that raid. I used to be there that evening, and I felt like if I’d have laid down I in all probability would have been a sufferer, so I felt betrayed, I felt like, I felt like I used to be expendable. I felt like, like maybe I used to be on the incorrect aspect. Yeah, yeah, I had my misgivings. I’m not going to, I, no, I’m not going to take a seat right here now and take the duty for the raid, , I’m not going to try this. I did not pull the set off. I did not difficulty the warrant. I did not put the weapons in the house. So I’m not going to take the duty for that, however I do really feel like I used to be betrayed. I felt like I ought to have recognized the raid was coming down. I felt prefer it was in all probability extreme. You know, I felt prefer it was a surgical strike, , and I used to be actually indignant for fairly a number of days. Quite a number of days.
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