Pete O'Neal, 70, founded the Kansas City chapter of the Black Panther party and once threatened to "shoot my way into the House of Representatives." He fled the country in 1970, eventually landing in Tanzania:
"Exile was supposed to be temporary. O'Neal corresponded with other Panthers and planned to return home to help lead the revolution. He watched from abroad as the party collapsed from infighting, arrests and an FBI campaign of surveillance and sabotage. People stopped talking about revolution. Radicals found new lives.
"O'Neal's exile became permanent. His fury abated. Some of it was age. Some of it was Tanzania, where strangers always materialized to push your Land Rover out of the mud, and where conflicts were resolved in community meetings in which everyone got to speak, interminably."
PUBLISHED: Jan. 29, 2012
LENGTH: 11 minutes (2811 words)
(Part One of Two) He kept thinking that there had been a mistake, that he'd be out in no time. That the system, set into motion by some misunderstanding or act of malice, would soon correct itself. That was before the detective informed him of the charges, and before the article in the Ventura County Star. "Man held after woman found raped and tortured," read the headline, and there was his name, along with a quote from a police officer: "In 19 years of police work, this has to go down as one of the most brutal attacks I have ever seen."
PUBLISHED: June 26, 2011
LENGTH: 14 minutes (3542 words)
In 1993, 39-year-old Robert Rizzo arrived in town trailing the vague whiff of scandal. For a time he seemed like the man the working-class city needed — until he became an 'unelected and unaccountable czar.' "Rizzo and seven other Bell leaders past and present are charged with looting more than $5.5 million from one of the county's poorest municipalities. It is a hydra-headed scandal that has spawned seven federal, state and county investigations and transformed a forgotten suburb into a synonym for rogue governance. It has resonated as a morality tale in which Rizzo is cast as a greed-crazed, cigar-chomping puppet master who cheated his way to an $800,000 salary and a 10-acre horse ranch."
PUBLISHED: Dec. 28, 2010
LENGTH: 10 minutes (2633 words)