Serle Chapman Interviews Bernie Lafferty [UPDATED]

Darlene KaMook Nichols, former wife of AIM co-founder & leader Dennis Banks, testified during the 2004 trial of Arlo Looking Cloud re: his role in killing Annie Mae Pictou-Aquash that Leonard Peltier had bragged to KaMook, her sister Bernie Lafferty and to Annie Mae Aquash that he had shot FBI Agents on June 26, 1975.

Fritz Arlo Looking Cloud was found guilty for his involvement in the murder of Annie Mae:

Richard Two Elk testified at Arlo Looking Cloud’s 2004 trial that Looking Cloud said he gave a gun to John Boy Graham who then went off with Annie Mae Aquash to the site where she was killed and that after she started to pray Graham put the gun to her head and shot her:

Earlier this month on Tuesday September 10, 2013 the South Dakota Supreme Court rejected the second appeal by John Graham (known as ‘John Boy’) regarding his December 2010 conviction for murdering Annie Mae Aquash:

The article linked above notes:

Graham was convicted of murder in December 2010 after prosecutors said Graham and two other AIM activists, Arlo Looking Cloud and Theda Clarke, killed Aquash because they suspected she was a government informant.

Here is an excerpt from Serle Chapman’s 2001 interview with Bernie Nichols-Lafferty, sister of KaMook Nichols, regarding Leonard Peltier’s confession that he shot FBI Agents.

Serle Chapman: Do you remember what [Annie Mae Aquash’s] reaction was to Leonard [Peltier] telling you he’d killed the [FBI] agents?

Bernie Lafferty: Her reaction?

Serle Chapman: Uh huh.

Bernie Lafferty: Emm, I can’t remember. I just, I think mostly because of how I reacted myself. Because, I don’t even know – he just told us! I, I don’t know if we – I don’t think we asked him or anything. And we, we were just talking about it one time and he told us and I’ve never, in my whole life, since that day, ever told anybody or admitted it, or said I knew anything, until right now when I’m talking to you.

Serle Chapman: Uh huh. Well, you know, 26 years is a long time for a fallacy and reinvention of history and a lot of other people, a lot of other people’s lives have been affected because of that.

Bernie Lafferty: Yeah.

Serle Chapman: But I want to talk about that some more. Emm, correct me if I’m wrong here, but part what [Leonard Peltier] said was, ‘That mother-fu¢ker was begging for his life but I shot that fu¢ker anyway.’

Bernie Lafferty: Uh huh.

Serle Chapman: Is that how you remember it?

Bernie Lafferty: That’s – yeah. I know if it was those exact words but yeah, that was kind of basically what he said.

Serle Chapman: Did he say anything about shooting the other agent or not, because that was in reference to the guy who was still conscious and sat up against the car.

Bernie Lafferty: I just remember him saying the one, you know, like he was holding up his hand or something like that.

Serle Chapman: He was holding up his hand like a gun?

Bernie Lafferty: Emm – Kind of holding his hand up like you know, so they won’t shoot you, or asking him not to shoot you, or something in that reference. Kind of like that.

Serle Chapman: Uh huh. That the agent was holding his hand up?

Bernie Lafferty: Yeah.

Serle Chapman: And Leonard had his finger on his hand like cocked into a gun?

Bernie Lafferty: Uh huh.

Serle Chapman: Yeah? Is that how  you remember it?

Bernie Lafferty: Emm, I can’t remember all that but I just – I remember him saying what you said.

Serle Chapman: Uh huh.

Bernie Lafferty: And he told us, you know, that he – He told us that he, you know, shot them. And that, then, up that point I didn’t know what happened actually – the real truth and everything – and, emm.

Serle Chapman: So how did you feel about it when he told you that – did it surprise you?

Bernie Lafferty: Yeah. I mean, I was like; yeah I was really surprised because you know I thought, you know, I, I really didn’t even want to know, you know; because now I have to live with that – knowing, for the rest of my life, you know. And I’d rather have not even known.


UPDATE: Here’s section of this same interview believed to be regarding the murder of Perry Ray Robinson Jr. who was married to Cheryl Buswell of Sparta, Wisconsin.

People do miss him.

Bernie Lafferty: Yeah. They said they killed him and then one of them said he was a black man and, and I was just like trying; you know I just, I; well you know they trusted me, I was there so they knew I wasn’t, you know. But emm, and they just talked and I remember them talking about, you know, shooting him and they they said, ‘Well we buried him up–’; and if I remember right they said they buried him up on the hill or something, on a hillside or something and emm, they said, ‘Well no one will ever find him, you know. No one’s going to miss him.’ And they was just talking like that and I don’t remember why they, you know, I; I don’t know if there was like a fight or argument, or something you know that he wouldn’t do, or something. And anyway, he wasn’t co-operating with them so they said they just emm killed him and they buried him. And by, you know by then I was going back into the kitchen and thought – I kind of felt real funny, you know, like in my chest or something because I thought you know, they couldn’t have really did that you I was thinking, because you can’t just do that to people, you know.

Serle Chapman: About what time of day was it – do you remember?

Bernie Lafferty: It was, it was in the evening. If that’s – as best I can remember it was in the evening.You know, it was like already dark out.

Serle Chapman: Okay.

Bernie Lafferty: But then that could have been like even earlier because then, you know, it was like winter time; it gets dark early.

Serle Chapman: So who was in the room?

Bernie Lafferty: Emm, I think probably pretty much everybody you said; that we named before that usually went to the meetings. I don’t know, I’m not sure if Henry Wawasick was there then because he would like, he; for some reason he would leave and then like walk out and then come back with like more weapons or people and stuff like that. So I can’t say definitely if he was there or not, but I remember Carter and Dennis, Russ, emm, Stan Holder, Dave; and I, you know, I can’t really say who else but the usual people were there.

Serle Chapman: Was Clyde in there when you were serving this coffee and having this conversation about killing the black guy?

Bernie Lafferty: Emm. I’m not real sure if he was or not.

Serle Chapman: But definitely – definitely in the room participating in the discussion about killing the black guy and burying him, was Dennis Banks, Carter Camp, Russ Means, Stan Holder and David Hill?

Bernie Lafferty: Uh huh (yes).

Serle Chapman: And was about Crow Dog, was he in there?

Bernie Lafferty: Yeah, I’m pretty sure he was in there.


See also: Dennis Banks & The Murder That Won’t Go Away


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