With sunrise more than an hour away, eight police officers from the Cook County state’s attorney’s office crept to the front of a tattered two-flat on Chicago’s West Side. Another six officers were at the back door. Inside, nine people slept in the first-floor apartment, where 19 guns and more than 1,000 rounds of ammunition were stored. This apartment, at 2337 W. Monroe St., was a stronghold of the Illinois Black Panther Party, a branch of a national group known for revolutionary politics.
About 4:45 a.m., Sgt. Daniel Groth knocked on the front door. When there was no answer, he knocked with his gun. The next seven minutes of gunfire became one of the most hotly disputed incidents of the turbulent 1960s. After the shooting stopped, Illinois Black Panther leader Fred Hampton, 21, and a party leader from Peoria, Mark Clark, 22, were dead.
The Chicago police department and the FBI murdered Fred Hampton.