Bernie Lafferty Speaks Regarding Leonard Peltier
February 19, 2005


KaMook's (Banks) Nichols recital to News From Indian Country in September of 2001 regarding Peltier bragging about shooting the FBI agents on June 26, 1975, and wanting to give Annie Mae Pictou-Aquash truth serum were both vetted and corroborated during the year 2001 before News From Indian Country made its position known publically in its editorial pages.

During Arlo Looking Cloud's trial in February, 2004, KaMook Nichols testified to the same information while under oath, specifically noting on the record that in addition to Annie Mae Aquash's presence in the motor home, her sister, Bernie Nichols-Lafferty was there as well, and witnessed the same incident in which Peltier bragged about shooting the FBI agents.

Recently, Robert Robideau, now speaking as a legal consultant to Barry Bachrach, Leonard Peltier's attorney, put out a press release on February 17, 2005 which once again attempted to disparage the credibility of KaMook Nichols, this time using her sister Bernie:

"False statements by Mr. Graham and lies by Kamook (Banks) Ecoffey [a/k/a Darlene Nichols] have been embraced by the media, which is reporting these outrageous accusations against Leonard. In the case of Kamook, who said that Leonard "...believed [Anna Mae] was a fed, and he was going to get some truth serum and give it to her so that she would tell the truth," her own sister, Bernie Lafferty, said in a taped interview that she knew this to be a lie.................."

In addition, Robert Robideau's taped confession to shooting the agents on June 26, 1975, made to editor Paul DeMain from Spain on Feb. 18th, 2005 in a phone call from Robideau, seems to be insincere. Not only did Robideau and Dino Butler at one time both contemplate confessing to shooting the agents years ago, knowing that the double jeopardy clause would prevent a retrial on the charge of murder, it seems odd, that what was said on February 18, 2005, wouldn't have been said 29 years ago when Leonard Peltier was first on trial.

News From Indian Country and responds now with the following tape transcript of Bernie Lafferty speaking specifically to both the issues of Peltier wanting to give Annie Mae truth serum, and relating in her own words the same scenario in which Peltier bragged about shooting the FBI agents.

Because of security concerns the author of this interview has requested his/her name be withheld.

Friday, March 9, 2001

Question: Now do you remember the conversation that Leonard had with you and Ka-Mook, and I don't know if anybody else was there, at which he mentioned that he'd thought about giving Annie Mae truth serum. Do you remember that one?

Bernie Lafferty: Emm, I kind of remember it but it's not like real clear. But I remember him saying something like that. But it; to me it was like a joke because actually I think I kind of might have laughed and said, 'There ain't no such thing as truth serum!' you know.

Question: Well apparently he was serious about it. But I mean, was there anybody else there who heard that?

Bernie Lafferty: Emm - I don't know if; I don't think so but.

Question: Because Ka-Mook has got a good recollection of him; she said that he talked about the fact that he'd already put a gun to her head and that that hadn't worked and so he was thinking about giving her truth serum. Is that how you remember it?

Bernie Lafferty: Emm, yeah. I remember him talking about that. But I don't know if there was anybody else there or not.

Question: So probably just you three then?

Bernie Lafferty: Uh huh.

Question: So at what - at what point did Annie Mae tell you that she wanted to go home?

Bernie Lafferty: Emm, I mean like, when we were there; I mean like, Annie Mae and I spent - because you know like, it was Ka-Mook and Dennis, and then there was Leonard - but Annie Mae and I spent like almost every minute of the day with each other! So we got to be really close. But emm; and I told her, I said, 'You know what, I know about you and Dennis but that's really none of my business you know. And whatever happens, you know.' And I said, 'You know I don't hold anything against you.' And which, you know, we just talked about things like that and she talked about her kids and her family; and she said she was really lonesome and stuff and she wanted, you know, to go home and see them; but I didn't ask her why or anything, if I did I don't remember what her answer was but emm; I know they told her that - not to go home. Or she couldn't go home right then because - I don't know if it was because of everything going on, or what their reason was or whatever.

Question: But it was Dennis and Leonard who told her that she couldn't go, right?

Bernie Lafferty: Yeah. Uh huh. And then most of the time when Dennis said something we were all so stupid then we'd just say, 'Okay', you know!

Question: How did she feel about Dennis at this point? Did she trust him?

Bernie Lafferty: Emm - I don't know if she did or not. You know she was like kind of, kind of a little standoffish towards him and stuff. But I didn't; at that time I just thought maybe because of what went on between them before and like that, you know.

Question: So do you think that she still loved him at this point?

Bernie Lafferty: She never really told me, anything that she loved him, or anything like that.

Question: During these conversations did she ever say anything about anybody threatening her life?

Bernie Lafferty: Emm - just from that deal with Leonard. And, emm . . .

Question: The one in Farmington?

Bernie Lafferty: Yeah. But actually, she never said anything about anybody threatening her - I mean you know, like trying to kill her or anything like that, that I can remember.

Question: Do you remember what her (Annie Mae's) reaction was to Leonard telling you that he'd killed the agents?

Bernie Lafferty: Her reaction?

Question: 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 then 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.

Question: 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.

Question: But I want to talk about that some more. Emm, correct me if I'm wrong here, but part of what he said was, 'That mother-fucker was begging for his life but I shot that fucker anyway.'

Bernie Lafferty: Uh huh.

Question: Is that how you remember it?

Bernie Lafferty: That's - yeah. I don't know if it was those exact words but yeah, that was kind of basically what he said.

Question: 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 his hand up or something like that.

Question: He was holding his hand up 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.

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

Bernie Lafferty: Yeah.

Question: And Leonard had his finger or his hand like cocked into a gun?

Bernie Lafferty: Uh huh.

Question: 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.

Question: 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 to that point I didn't know what happened actually - the real truth and everything - and, emm.

Question: 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 like, you know. And I'd rather have not even ever known.

See also:

Support the extradition of John Graham

Indigenous Women for Justice

Anna Mae Pictou-Aquash and Ray Robinson Jr. Justice Fund

One of the first AIM people to suspect that Douglass Durham was some sort of government agent was Anna Mae Pictou Aquash...

Anna Mae Archive

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