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On this date in 1972, Angela Davis was acquitted of all charges stemming from a failed escape and kidnap attempt in the Marin County, CA’s Hall of Justice two years earlier.
In the escape, kidnap attempt, and shooting, the trial judge and three others were killed. Though not at the crime scene, Davis was implicated when police claimed that the guns used had been registered in her name. Davis fled via underground and was consequently listed on the FBI's Top 10 Most Wanted Criminals list, setting off one of the most intensive manhunts in recent American history. Then California Governor Ronald Reagan, publicly vowed that Davis would never teach in that state again.
She was captured in New York City in August 1970 but was freed 18 months later and cleared of all charges by an all-white jury. During the trial, an international Free Angela Davis movement had grown, and she used the momentum to found The National Alliance Against Racist and Political Repression, which remains active today.