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VOLUME 22 NO. 25
Thompson settlement is ‘a business decision’
By John Minter
The City of Charlotte has
offered to pay $550,000 to the
children of Windy Gail
Thompson, a black woman shot
and killed by a police ofBcer in
The offer, in which the city
admits no liability, was
approved by the City Council
Monday night as settlement for
Mayor Pat McCrory said.
a wrongful
death lawsuit.
“It basically
was a busi
ness and
financial deci
sion for the
city of
Charlotte and
it may be the
same for the
James Ferguson, attorney for
the Thompson family, could not
be reached to confirm an agree
The Thompson shooting has
long been a sore spot in
Charlotte race relations, spawn
ing a wave of protests and vigils
that were heightened following
the shooting death last
November of James Willie
Cooper, an unarmed black man,
by another Charlotte police offi-
On Jan. 27, some 500 blacks,
led by Ben Chavis, now a mem
ber of the Nation of Islam,
demonstrated at the Square
City officials said they hoped
the settlement would help
rebuild race relations.
“We all feel deep concern and
compassion when a situation
results in the death of a mem-
See CITY on page 3A
Windy Thompson, an unarmed
motorist, was shot and killed in a
1993 confrontation with Charlotte
police officer Mark Farmer. The
city plans to offer Thompson’s fam
ily $550,000 to settle a lawsuit and
bring “closure to the case,” Mayor
Pat McCrory said.
future still
By John Minter
The future of McDonald’s
Cafeteria appears to be moving
toward resolution.
The principals involved, which
include McDonald family mem
bers, refuse to confirm reports
fiom somces across the commu
Eunice McDonald, widow of
the cafeteria’s founder, John D.
McDonald, refuses to talk about
the proposed sale of the busi
“We don’t need any controver
sy,” she said. “We need people to
come up here and eat.”
McDonald’s daughter, Brenda
Poage, echoed that sentiment,
saying the family just want
community support for the
westside landmark built by
John McDonald, who died in
The outline of the situation,
. according to sources, is that the
McDonald’s family entered into
an agreement with Louis Pinto,
■ an East Indian, for a six-month
management contract, which
would end this spring with
Pinto having an option of pur
chasing the restaurant, hotel
and adjacent Fun City park.
In December, the mortgage for
the facility - $3.6 million from
NationsBank and $800,000
finm the City of Charlotte - was
in danger of foreclosure. Pinto
has been trying to secure financ
ing for a purchase.
In the meantime, the deal
with Pinto went sour. On
Friday, Pinto was escorted fi'om
the premises. The McDonalds,
with former manager John
Jennings, were back in the
See MCDONALD on page 3A
Sista act
Tina McDonald of Sista Productions performs “Sista’s House” during the organization’s first
anniversary ceiebration at Spirit Square. The troupe performs reguiariy in Charlotte and the sur
rounding area.
may not finger
King’s killer
MEMPHIS, Term. - James Earl Ray wants new scientific tests on
the rifle beheved to have kfiled Martin Luther King
Jr., but authorities contend such a review would be
of little value.
Ray pleaded guilty to killing King in Memphis in
1968 but has been trying to take it back'ever since.
As part of those efforts, he is seeking new tests on
the .30-06 hunting rifle found, with his fingerprints
on it, near the murder scene.
The rifle was tested by the FBI and a congression
al committee that decided in 1978 that Ray was the
killer, though he may have had help before or after
the minder.
Six firearms specialists for the House committee
said the iifie left inconsistent mai’ks on difierent bullets fired from it.
While unusual, that is not unheard of with high-powered rifles, they
'The examiners could not conclusively identify the rifle as the murder
weapon, but the general characteristics of barrel markings on the
death slug matched bullets fired by Ray’s gun.
Ray’s lawyer wants to use a scanning electron microscope to com
pare the death bullet with new test bullets fired from Ray’s rifle.
Such microscopes are up to 1,000 times stronger than those original
ly used in the tests on the King rifle.
Blackness focus of
debate in St. Louis
mayor s primary
By Ed Shafer
ST. LOUIS - It’s not easy to
make race the main issue in a
mayoral contest in which both
the major players are black. But
the/ve done it in St. Louis.
The cit/s first black mayor.
Freeman Bosley Jr., is up for re-
election in April and, as a
Democrat, is almost certain of
■sdctory if he can get past the pri
mary in March. It has been
more than 50 years since the
city elected a Republican mayor.
Bosley’s only serious opponent
in the primary is former Police
Chief Clarence Harmon, who is
See ST. LOUIS on page 6A
Combative Waters carving niche in Congress
By Darlene Superville
Rep. Maxine Waters, with a congressional aide, distributes leaflets to South Central Los Angeles
residents after calling for an investigation into possible Central Intelligence Agency connections to
the Introduction of crack into the U.S. Waters is chair of the Congressional Black Caucus.
WASHINGTON - She jumped at the chance to serve as a go-between
for school administrators and congressional inquisitors on the black
English controversy. She told a Republican to “shut up!” during a
Whitewater hearing.
Meet Rep. Maxine Waters, the unrelenting, unapologetic firebrand who
now heads the Congressional Black Caucus.
When members of the Oakland, Calif., school board came to Congress to
explain their new policy on black Enghsh, she rushed to defend them
against skeptical Republicans. Always looking out for her own, the
Democratic congresswoman from Los Angeles provided some moral sup
port so the school officials would feel less intimidated by the Senate inter
“I want to be part of setting the record straight,” Waters said, maintain
ing that RepubHcans were too harshly attacking the black English edu
cation policy.
It is just that sort of outspokenness that is needed to rejuvenate the 38-
member caucus - a minority within the Democratic minority in Congress
— Waters’ supporters say.
Said she: “If someone does not hke my style and they’re critical of it,
that’s OK As long as I’m comfortable that I’ve done the right thing, I real
ly don’t care what others think about me.”
Waters’ fiery style contrasts sharply with the more laid-back manner of
her immediate predecessors, Reps. Kweisi Mfiime, D-Md., and Donald
Payne, D-N.J.
See WATERS on page 2.A
Editorials 4A-5A
Strictly Business 8A
Lifestyles 10A
Religion 12A
Sports 1B
A&E 4B
Regional News 9B
Classified 11B
Auto Showcase 12B
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© 1996 The Charlotte Post
Publishing Company.
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