Richard Bowden Interview No. 3, March 6, 2009Dawn Bellinger2022-04-29T11:54:30-04:00
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54 ORAL HISTORY OF RICHARD KIRKLAND BOWDEN Third Interview March 6, 2009 This interview is being conducted on behalf of the Oral History Project of the Historical Society of the District of Columbia Circuit. The interviewee is Richard Kirkland Bowden, and the interviewer is Joshua Klein. The interview took place on March 6, 2009. This is the third interview. Mr. Klein: Okay, we’re live and depending on which subject you want to start first, you could handle – just so we close off the issue – the way prisoners are moved from the cellblock to the courtroom, or the way they were moved then. Or, you can go straight into the Watergate trials if you’d rather do that. Mr. Bowden: Well, let’s do the prisoner movement, cellblock to the courtroom. Without divulging any security information, I can say that the cellblocks behind the courtroom are very, very secure, and the designers, back in the early 1950s, were a little ahead of their time when they took into consideration the movement of prisoners. Because once prisoners are in the building, the U.S. District Court building, they are not exposed to the general public, or the general public has no access to them. The trial courts are on floors 2, 4, and 6. Courtrooms 1, 8, and 15 are on the Constitution Avenue side of the building, and they use a common elevator. On the second floor are Courtrooms 2 through 7; on the fourth floor, on the C Street side, are Courtrooms 9 through 14. On the sixth floor, are 16 through 19. There is no Courtroom 13, and it is alleged that the reason they chose not to use Courtroom 13, or to number a courtroom 13, is that no one wants to go to trial or to be sentenced on Friday, the 13 , because of, in some cultures and some th societies, the significance of Friday the 13 . So where Courtroom 13 in sequence th 55 would normally be, it’s Courtroom 21. There was a practice in this court for many years that all sentencing was done on Fridays regardless of whether the defendant pled guilty or was found guilty by jury. The courts scheduled all their sentencing on Friday. So with fourteen active judges and all sentencing on Fridays, you had a huge population in the cellblock in the basement of this building. Up until 1975, 1976, your common-law cases were tried in this court. So you had a population with violations in the United States Code and you also had some District of Columbia violations. You had unauthorized use of automobiles. They called them “numbers” in those days, illegal lottery, those kinds of cases, and also prostitution. Those kinds of cases were tried here. So you had that population to be sentenced, as well as violations in the United States District Court. So it would not be unusual to have 150 people in the cellblock downstairs on a Friday. So, from a logistical standpoint, that was of some concern. Mr. Klein: How many marshals were there for 150 prisoners? Mr. Bowden: There were maybe 16 to 18 assigned to the cellblock, and then you had whatever was necessary in the courtroom to handle a particular judge’s workload. But before we get there, I came in 1962, there was a deputy marshal assigned permanently to each United States District Court judge. And that person worked in the courtroom exclusively with, and handled all the matters before, that court with assistance from other deputies. In 1962, as I said, the deputies were assigned to a judge. And the deputies who worked in the cellblock brought the prisoners up to the cellblock behind the courtroom. There’s an elevator that serves each of 56 the courtrooms. Two courtrooms side-by-side share a common cellblock behind that courtroom, and the elevators are numbered that go straight up a tier. And you know what elevator to take because you know what floor and what courtroom you’re going to. There were no black deputies, no African-American deputies assigned to the courtroom until 1965, when Spotswood Robinson was appointed. Up until then, there were no black deputies assigned to a judge. From June 1962, to maybe some time that same year, fall or winter of 1962, black deputies did not go into the courtroom with prisoners. The marshal at that time was Luke C. Moore who was an African-American, and he was not aware of that policy. And once he became aware of it, he immediately changed it, or had it changed. Mr. Klein: And it changed, you think, in the fall or winter of 1962, the end of the year? Mr. Bowden: Yes. It was in June when I came and it was going on. And I know it was a couple, two or three months, that black deputies weren’t allowed to go into the courtroom with prisoners. You must understand that the population of the community was different. The jury panel was predominantly white. Many offenders were white at that time. I can only speculate that that was a driving force. But the deputies were all qualified and competent to do the work, and consequently it was proven that they could do the work, and did the work. Now, getting on to juries, sequestered juries, deliberating juries. All of the black deputies up until the mid-sixties only worked in the courtroom temporarily, or a very brief period. They were mostly in the field serving court orders/process, executing evictions, criminal warrants, and that type of field work. They weren’t working in the courtroom at that time. The public is aware of six floors in this 57 building, but there’s a seventh floor and an eighth floor. The public elevator stops at the sixth floor. On the north side of the building, on the seventh floor and eighth floor, were dormitory-type rooms that were used for sequestration of jurors. The seventh floor was relegated for women, and the eighth floor was relegated for men, for obvious reasons. This was before female deputies – sworn officers. So females who were assigned to the office, who worked in the office, were sworn in as matrons. They had no arresting powers. They were only there to assist the male deputies in facilitating the women. So if a jury was sequestered overnight, we had deputies at each end of the hallway of the dormitory setting, in small rooms with a bed, about the size of a hospital bed, and a face basin. There was a community shower, and several commodes that were shared on that floor. So there would be two male deputies, one at each end of the corridor, and a female matron to assist on the seventh floor. On the eighth floor would be two deputies, one on each end just to make sure that no one came up to interfere with the jurors. So that was the layout of the jurors that were sequestered overnight. The first sequestered jury outside of this building was the Watergate jury. Mr. Klein: Before you get to that, just to finish up the sequestered juries in the building. How often would there be a sequestered jury using those dorms? Mr. Bowden: As I recall, maybe once a year. Some of the cases, they weren’t very long. Some were three or four days, maybe a week or two. And I can’t cite the cases, but there were cases that had a lot of notoriety and they didn’t want the jury to be tainted. When the jury was selected, they did not know what deputies would be assigned. 58 Mr. Klein: Meaning? Mr. Bowden: The jury in those days were mostly white jurors, and most of the women on the jury were white. Mr. Klein: Were the matrons white too? Mr. Bowden: Yes. Mr. Klein: So they were selecting white marshals for them. How did jurors react to being sequestered? Did you notice them being resentful or upset? Mr. Bowden: No. Some took it as an adventure. I only worked one or two. I don’t recall any having any real problems. In the basement of this building, there was a cafeteria that was managed by GSA, employees of GSA, but was well-staffed. And it was a four or five-course meal. And there was a room away from the public cafeteria, that was set aside for the sequestered jurors. So they got two hot meals in the building, breakfast and lunch. Dinner was outside the building, be that in a restaurant, or in many cases we used military installations. Mr. Klein: The jurors would all go together to the restaurant or the military base to eat that dinner? Mr. Bowden: Escorted by the marshal. We would charter a bus, put everybody on the bus, go eat, come back. Some judges would permit them to have one cocktail at dinner, but they had to pay for it themselves. Some judges would not permit any cocktail. Mr. Klein: Do you know why they stopped using — Mr. Bowden: Using this building? Mr. Klein: The dormitory style and starting putting them in, I guess, hotels for Watergate? 59 Mr. Bowden: Yes. Because they knew the duration of the Watergate trial would not have been able to accommodate that many people we had, as well as it was too cumbersome. The confinement to stay in this building 24 hours, 7 days a week, it’s just not workable. As I told you, the bathroom situations were dormitory-type. Sharing showers and that type of thing, they had limited privacy. And Judge Sirica, I’m very comfortable by saying that he thought it was best to sequester the jury outside the building. Mr. Klein: Judge Sirica you said? Mr. Bowden: Judge Sirica asked the U.S. Marshal to find a place outside the building. I was detailed to find a place. I was the supervisor at the time and my task was to find a suitable hotel. So we were able to get a contract that the court paid. It was at the Shoreham Hotel. It’s now a Marriott. Wardman Towers. We took a wing at that hotel. Mr. Klein: An entire wing? Mr. Bowden: An entire wing Mr. Klein: Four floors. Mr. Bowden: No, just one floor. But a wing on a floor. And we secured that. We had the elevator situated so it wouldn’t stop on that floor. The general public couldn’t stop on that floor. And each juror had a private room. It was a hotel. And that’s what the judge wanted. Mr. Klein: And the marshals were still keeping guard? Mr. Bowden: Oh yes. Mr. Klein: Multiple marshals? 60 Mr. Bowden: Yes indeed. We had a full staff, 24/7. We moved them by chartered bus. They would have breakfast at the hotel, lunch here at the courthouse, some dinners at the hotel. Weekends we would have some type of activity outside of the hotel, and one or two nights we would eat out of the hotel. Then again we used military installations because they were convenient, secure meals. Mr. Klein: What sorts of military installations were they? Mr. Bowden: We used Bolling Air Force Base, the Officers Club at Bolling Air Force Base. Andrews Air Force Base. Mr. Klein: Did the jurors get any visits with family or children? Mr. Bowden: Limited visits. On weekends, we’d have a schedule for beauty shop, barber shop. We tried to get everybody to go to the same beauty shop, if possible. The same barber shop, as much as possible. For religious services, we accommodate faith as opposed to individual church. Protestants, we’d let the Protestants select what Protestant church they wanted to go to; Catholics select what Catholic church they wanted to go to; Jewish select the synagogue they wanted to attend. Mr. Klein: They selected as a group? Mr. Bowden: Right. We didn’t have the manpower for everybody to go to their individual church. And we would try to get that information at least by Thursday or Friday, those who were interested in going. Because we had to do an advance with the leader of that congregation, with the rabbi, the pastor, or the priest, to let them know who we were, what we were doing, and try to suggest not to use a sermon that’s going to talk about something about Watergate or about that kind of crime. Mr. Klein: So did you have those conversations with ministers and priests and — 61 Mr. Bowden: Yes. Yes. Mr. Klein: How did they react? Mr. Bowden: Fine. I never had anyone say “no, you can’t tell me what to say from my pulpit.” They understood. Some of them didn’t intend to talk about it in any event, so it didn’t alter their sermon or their message in any event. But we wanted to make sure that there was no slip of the tongue and, by all means, don’t say who we are, you know, “We have visitors here.” That type of thing. Mr. Klein: So the group would come in together, escorted by marshals in plain clothes? Mr. Bowden: Of course. We were always in plain clothes. We would try to get there before the mass congregation so we could sit in a group. Sometimes, if it was a large enough church, they would just reserve an area. Just put “Reserve” on it and not say who we are. Just “Reserve.” But now remember, rarely did it get above 10- 12 people in any congregation, so it’s not like we walked in with the whole panel. Entertainment: during football season, we were able to get football tickets for those who were interested in going, we carried them as a group. Saturdays, a lot of activity going on over the weekend. We tried to keep them busy as much as possible so that they would not feel that they were confined. Weather permitting, we would go up to Hershey Park, Pennsylvania, on an excursion – those who wanted to go, have a day out. Now the question that, I guess, is in your mind, “what do you do for clothing?” There were two ways in which you could do it. Some families would bring clothing to the courthouse and leave it at the Marshals Office. And we’d take it back to the hotel and they would switch their clothing that way. Some went to their homes and retrieved fresh clothing. We would try 62 to do it about every two weeks. We would try to give them two weeks worth of clothing. Mr. Klein: They would retrieve the clothes with an escort, or on their own? Mr. Bowden: No, no, no, no. Any movement, any movement, always under escort. Always under the eyes and control of the marshals. Telephone calls were monitored. We had a telephone system set up. I’ll explain that to you in a minute. When we would go to the home, the deputy would go in first. Many times, we’d call and tell the family what time we were coming, because we’d try to make that a family visit, if possible. The family was instructed as to what they could say, what they could not say in front of the jurors. We’d get all the newspapers out of the way that would have some reference to the trial, turn off the radio, televisions, etc. And the juror would never be alone with anyone, this is to a husband, wife or to a significant other. You would not have any private time. We are real people, we understand emotions. So hugging and that kind of thing was tolerated, but there was no closed-door encounter. Not to separate husband and wife conjugal activity – it’s that we did not want any language, or we could say to the court that this person has not been exposed to any language about the trial. Mr. Klein: So would you just stand across the room during the visit, close enough so you could hear what was said, but otherwise – Mr. Bowden: Out of the way. A piece of furniture, if you will. Mr. Klein: How did it feel to do that? Did it feel awkward? Mr. Bowden: It’s an awkward situation. But what we tried to do is to pair the same deputy with the same juror on those visits. That way, the family got to know the deputy, the 63 deputy got to know the family. It was not a stranger coming into their house every week. He’s an outsider, but not a stranger. Do you follow what I’m saying? So I kept a list of two or three deputies who went with this group, and I tried to keep that group together. Mr. Klein: And did you know that some of the deputies, and certain deputies and certain jurors got along better? Mr. Bowden: Yes. You could tell that on going back and forth from the courthouse to the hotel. People are people, and people gravitate on their own. You may find a deputy and a juror who have a common interest in a certain type of automobile; they develop a conversation, a rapport, if you will. They may like the same sports, whatever. So as long as there’s no violation, no integrity violation, that’s the kind of activity you want, because that relaxes the juror. And psychologically, if they’re relaxed, you don’t get any complaints. And if you don’t get any complaints, everybody’s happy. You have a successful operation. Mr. Klein: At this point, were some of the female deputies doing the escorts too? Mr. Bowden: Yes. We had female deputies at that time. That’s how the beauty shop visits got accomplished. And that eliminated a lot of curiosity as to who these people were. You have a female deputy in a beauty shop, that’s a natural scene. A male in a beauty shop is not a natural scene. In those days it was not a natural scene. Mr. Klein: I also wanted to ask about mail and newspapers. Mr. Bowden: Okay. I had the detail in shifts. The midnight to eight in the morning shift. I’m sorry, six to two, midnight to eight, that shift was responsible for censoring the newspapers. They read each page, line-by-line. Any reference to any criminality 64 associated with the indictment, be it named Watergate or anything, they clipped it out, dated it, put it in an envelope, and sealed it. All publications. We had some members of the panel who had magazines that came to their home that they were interested in getting. They would have their family to drop them off, we’d go through them. Anything that needed to be taken out, was taken out. It looked like Swiss cheese was cut out, put in an envelope, dated, and sealed. Mr. Klein: So the jurors got Swiss cheese? Mr. Bowden: [Laughter]. They laughed about it. They laughed about it. They made jokes about it. Paper dolls. They called it cutting out paper dolls. On telephone calls, there were no telephones in the individual rooms. Televisions and telephones were taken out. We had Housekeeping take telephones and televisions out of individual rooms. There were suites, two three-room suites at each end of the hall. Converted those suites into game rooms. That’s where the television was, or televisions. And there’s a deputy there – this is before remote – and he had an electric cord tied to the power cord, and anything that they couldn’t see, he’d just cut the switch and kill the power. Those that had remotes, we just changed the channel. When the news came on, we just changed the channel. Mr. Klein: Would you let people watch the news at all, or was there too much news about Watergate? Mr. Bowden: No. We didn’t let them watch news, period, because you never knew when a commentator might say something. So we just didn’t watch the news, period. Mr. Klein: What about things like the Tonight Show, or something like that? Would their jokes come on or something like that? 65 Mr. Bowden: They’re in bed? They’re in bed. Those that stayed up, we’d find a movie. Live shows or sports, quiz shows, that kind of stuff, but not the Tonight Show. We didn’t take that chance because you never know what Johnny Carson might say. Mr. Klein What about the radio? Mr. Bowden: No radio. It was just too cumbersome to try to monitor that media, radio media. We had games. Card games, Bingo, Monopoly, all kinds of board games. Chess, checkers. Had all kinds of board games. And had a couple basketballs. For those who wanted to go to the gym, the guys carried them. Go to the gym and shoot around, that kind of stuff. Mr. Klein: You were going to explain how the telephone monitoring worked. Mr. Bowden: They’d give us the number and the person they wanted to talk to. We’d call that person and tell that person who we were and who was calling. And monitor the time of the conversation, and we are going to be listening on the conversation and admonish the caller to not discuss the case. The juror knew you were listening, and the person on the other end knew we were listening. And you would log in that information. The date, time, and telephone number, and the general tenor of the conversation. Not verbatim, but the general tenor of the conversation. Mr. Klein: You would put that in the log? Mr. Bowden: Yes, in the log. Mr. Klein: Like what they talked about? Mr. Bowden: Yeah. Not graphic details, but just enough so that I could look at it and remember something about the conversation, what it was about. There were some interesting things said because there were some folk who were single and they 66 made several phone calls to several phone numbers. But you just listened and not listened, if you will. You listened for key words, key stuff, that you knew was not supposed to be said, and you would just terminate the call. Mr. Klein: So sometimes people would overstep? Mr. Bowden: I don’t recall anybody overstepping, and they may have, because I didn’t listen to every call. But the deputies knew what they were supposed to be listening for, and it wouldn’t surprise me if there was not an overstep. It wouldn’t surprise me. I never got a complaint from any of the jurors, saying, He cut my call off. Never got that complaint. Because they knew the importance of not violating that instruction on the call. So they were cooperative. Mr. Klein: How long did this sequestration last? Mr. Bowden: I think it was about six months. Six or eight months. It was a long trial. They were in trial a long time. I know they saw four seasons. Because up until recently, Judge Lamberth had the longest trial, which I think was almost nine months. But up until Judge Lamberth had that long trial, the Watergate trial was the longest trial. Mr. Klein: And it was 14 jurors, or 12? Mr. Bowden: Oh no, it was 24, I believe. Mr. Klein: And how did that work? Mr. Bowden: You meant, I thought, during the course of trial. See they were sequestered during the course of the trial, however, during deliberations then it was 12. Mr. Klein: So there were just a lot of alternates on that trial? Mr. Bowden: Yes. 67 Mr. Klein: I see. Mr. Bowden: And I don’t know whether or not the Federal Rule – Now you can only have so many alternates. But I don’t recall whether or not that rule was in effect then. I’ve forgotten now the number we had. We had a busload, I can tell you that. That’s interesting. I’ll have to find out the number. Mr. Klein: During the trial, were some of the jurors dismissed as the trial wore on the several months? Mr. Bowden: I don’t recall any of them being dismissed. I don’t recall. Mr. Klein: And how many marshals, approximately, were in this detail? And were they all from D.C. or did you have to call in others? Mr. Bowden: Yes, they were all D.C. Well, you had six per shift. You had six per shift, and three shifts. Mr. Klein: And you were the supervisor during this time? Mr. Bowden: During that period, right. Mr. Klein: Did you ever run into any of the jurors, afterwards, around town? Mr. Bowden: Yes. Yes. Let me tell you what happened. They developed a good relationship. And for two or three years afterwards, they had a reunion or they had a dinner that they would get together and they invited the marshals. And there were some marriages, or a marriage, that grew out of that. One or two people got married out of that relationship. And some have returned for jury duty and see me and say, “Oh, you’re still here.” I don’t recall their names. They’d have to remind me who they were. But it was a good experience. A good experience. And then there were other sequestered juries that we handled the same way. There have not 68 been any sequestered jurors in the building since Watergate because they found that that worked. We did not have – we, the Marshals Office – did not have in place standard operations for sequestered jurors in hotels. So we had to sit down and draw up some plans, and pass them through to Chief Judge Sirica, and he approved them. And that became the standard order, subsequently, in the U.S. Marshals’ manual. Mr. Klein: Nationwide. Mr. Bowden: Nationwide. As to how you do it. Mr. Klein: That’s very interesting. Mr. Bowden: Now, on Watergate. I’ve been thinking about this and I can’t put a date on it, but at some point during the course of trial, Judge Sirica had a heart attack on the bench. And the deputy by the name of Delovicko was assigned to him. Mr. Klein: Can you report the name? Mr. Bowden: Delovicko. D-e-l-o-v-i-c-k-o, I believe. And I have looked for something with his name on it, and I can’t find it. I know his first name is William. We called him Dutch. Mr. Klein: And he was in the courtroom at the time? Mr. Bowden: He was assigned. He was assigned to Judge Sirica. Remember I told you deputies were assigned? And he administered artificial resuscitation. I don’t think the judge was out that long before he came back. It was toward the end of the trial, and there was some down time. I just thought I’d share that. And what that did is cemented the notion of having a deputy marshal in the court at all times. There was a movement, and there still is a movement – I don’t think that 69 it’s going to go anywhere – but every now and then you get a new person who does not know the history of the Marshals Office and does not know the importance of having a deputy in the courtroom, who comes in – a new administration comes in – and this person was a warehouse superintendent someplace. And he looks at the manpower – and see’s where you put the manpower – and he says, “Well why’ve you got this guy up here standing around in the courtroom, and the judge is on the bench, and there’s no prisoners,” blah, blah, blah. So when that happened, some judges just refused to go in a courtroom. Mr. Klein: Unless there was a deputy. Mr. Bowden: Yes. So they’ve sort of backed down off of it now. But there was a strong movement to get the deputy out of the courtroom. Mr. Klein: But right now, in 2009, is there a deputy in every courtroom? Mr. Bowden: Except on civil trials. On criminal trials, there’s a deputy assigned. Whether there’s a prisoner or not, a deputy is assigned to the courtroom. Mr. Klein: Is there anything more we should cover on Watergate? Mr. Bowden: No, I think that’s about it. I think we’ve exhausted Watergate. Mr. Klein: Two other subjects I thought – there may be something you want to cover before these – but one is the shooting in the courthouse. Mr. Bowden: Okay, shooting in the courthouse? Mr. Klein: Right. Mr. Bowden: The takeover? Mr. Klein: Oh, the takeover; yes. 70 Mr. Bowden: Some time in the 1970s there was a takeover downstairs in the cellblock. I’m not sure whether the takeover was first or Norman Sherriff got killed first, because the Green brothers – they were notorious guys – were involved in both. The takeover came about because there was a conspiracy to free several inmates from D.C. Jail out of the cellblock. They were in D.C. Jail, and they were serial killers. When I say serial killers, one of them, Bruce Green, had killed several folk out in Southeast. He and Willie Strickland and Frank Gorham, a bunch of them, they were bad guys. Anyway, and the Green brothers were robbers, stick-up guys. All of them were in jail, and they all were scheduled to come up here to the United States District Court for their own case, whatever it was. And the Marshals Office got some intelligence that they were going to try to do something, so they split them up and sent two or three of them across the street to Superior Court until they were needed to come over here. And one of them had his arm in a sling, and so it was difficult to search him with that sling. It was a cast kind of sling. And while downstairs, there were some attorneys in there doing an interview, and the deputies down there, and he produced a gun and held the deputies hostage for two or three days. Mr. Klein: How many deputies were hostages? Mr. Bowden: Three. Well, the female deputy that was down there but got out. There was a female prisoner down there. I just remember the guys’ names, Frank Gorham, Bruce Shreeves, and two Green brothers, and Willie Strickland. Willie Strickland had killed two or three people. Mr. Klein: The hostages were held in the cellblock? 71 Mr. Bowden: Yes, the cellblock downstairs. The deputies and one or two lawyers, William Garber. You know William Garber? An old-timer. He was one. He was held. One of those was his client. He was representing one of those guys. Mr. Klein: Okay. You remember that a female deputy was released at some point? Mr. Bowden: She got out. Mr. Klein: She escaped? Mr. Bowden: She got out. She was near the door when they realized there was a takeover, so she was able to get out the door. But some of them got held. Mr. Klein: How long were they held? Mr. Bowden: Two or three days. Mr. Klein: And how did it end? Mr. Bowden: Peacefully. Nobody got hurt. They finally gave up. The thing that sticks with me is that during the hostage takeover, the chief deputy at that time was negotiating with the defendants, with the two defendants, to release the deputies. He made some concessions, or he made a statement that, if you’re a very sensitive person, you may take offense to it. But in negotiations, if you are a negotiator, you’re talking about saving lives. You make all kinds of statements and concessions in order to save lives, and if you say something about a person, that person shouldn’t take it personally, when you’re talking about saving lives. Way into the negotiations, they were making demands – they meaning the prisoners. We knew they were in the cellblock. They were not anywhere in the building, because we had searched the building and we had assured ourselves that all the defendants were still in the cellblock, and they knew they were in the cellblock. 72 This is going into the second or third day, and they knew they couldn’t get out. Even if they killed everybody, they weren’t going to get out of there. That was a foregone conclusion. You’re not getting out of here. Now, let’s make a deal. So, one of the defendants says, “Well, I know the chief judge is going to try to get us life,” blah blah blah, something like that. And the chief deputy is supposed to have said, “F— the chief judge, I can handle that.” Something like that. You understand? And I’m sure he said that to appease these folk, because these are killers. No question about it. They had already killed. So some more notches on their gun. How many times can they die? And the FBI was taping this negotiation, and when it was all over, they played it back, and the chief judge at the time heard the statements and banished the chief deputy from the courthouse. Mr. Klein: The chief judge did take offense at this negotiating tactic? Mr. Bowden: But nobody died. That’s a fact. Mr. Klein: And in the end, all the hostages were released? And, what happened to the defendants? Mr. Bowden: They were prosecuted. Some of them are still doing time. A couple of them died in jail. But the bottom line, nobody died. And they were in charge because they had the gun. Mr. Klein: Do you remember the names of any of the deputies who were hostages? Mr. Bowden: Castille, Joanne Neely. Mr. Klein: Joanne Neely was the woman who got out? Mr. Bowden: Right. 73 Mr. Klein: What did all the deputies think after this happened? Did procedures change? Security procedures? Mr. Bowden: There was no procedure violation. I don’t think they ever resolved fully how that gun got in that cellblock. There are several theories, but nobody knows for certain, unequivocally, how that gun got in that cellblock. The strong inclination is that he brought it in in that cast. Some folk seem to think that it came in an attaché case from an attorney. Mr. Klein: The marshals in the cellblock, they didn’t carry guns? Mr. Bowden: No. We never carry guns while handling prisoners in an environment like that. Not even in the courtroom. Mr. Klein: Would there be marshals who had guns nearby? Mr. Bowden: Nearby where? Mr. Klein: Near the cellblock. Mr. Bowden: No. Mr. Klein: And this was before tasers or anything like that? Mr. Bowden: Right. I’ve got one case I want to talk about. Two cases. Joe Valachi. Did I talk about Joe Valachi? Mr. Klein: No. Mr. Bowden: Joe Valachi, as you know, was crime syndicate – Mafia – out of New York. The reason I’m talking about it is because this was the beginning of the Witness Security Program. When Valachi decided to work with the government to unravel the Mafia, the D.C. office brought him here from New York to testify before Congress. So we went up in a caravan and brought him back in a caravan 74 of cars and deputies and housed him over at D.C. Jail. And when his testimony was over, we took him back to Manhattan. That was the beginning of the Witness Security Program. Mr. Klein: When you say you brought him in a caravan, was that because you were worried about ambushes? Mr. Bowden: Right. Yeah. As I look back on it now, it was a grand movement, because we must have had four or five cars, or POVs. We didn’t have government cars then. POVs. Personal owned vehicles. They had sharpshooters on tops of the buildings. Coming out of New York, they had the Holland Tunnel blocked off so we could expedite through there. Mr. Klein: Were you part of this? Mr. Bowden: I was just a rider. I was just in the car, if you will. But it was exciting now that I look back at it. That was the beginning of the Witness Security Program. And then there was a trial here. The trial of the imposter attorney. His name was Oliver Wendel Holmes Morgan. Tried cases here successfully in U.S. District Court – criminal cases successfully in U.S. District Court – but he was not a member of the bar. Had never gone to law school. And the way he got caught is that – this was before computers – your bar information was kept on a 3×5 card in the Clerk’s Office. And before vouchers, there was a fund. Attorneys were paid through that fund. Mr. Klein: Paid by the court? Mr. Bowden: Right. Through that program. And he had adopted a bar number and was getting paid. And one clerk looked at the card – the number – and saw something that 75 didn’t register. I’m not sure whether it was one digit too many, one digit too few, or an alphabet that shouldn’t have been there. There was something that this clerk saw that everybody else hadn’t paid any attention to, and began to check to see whether or not this was a good bar number. And it, of course, was not a good bar number. He was indicted, tried, convicted and sentenced. On the loading dock, where the marshals hook up the prisoners, I was getting ready to take him to Lewisburg as prescribed. I told him to put his hands out so I could put the cuffs on him. He said, “Marshal, you don’t have to put cuffs on me.” I said, “Why?” He said, “I’m an attorney.” I said, “But the jury convicted you. Said that you were not an attorney.” I say that to say that at that time, on his way to jail, he was still convinced that he was an attorney. Mr. Klein: Do you think he really believed it still? Mr. Bowden: I guess he did. I guess he did. But he had won cases. And he lost some. Mr. Klein: Did he represent himself in his trial or did he have a lawyer? Mr. Bowden: He did represent himself. Mr. Klein: He did? Mr. Bowden: He had a standby attorney, but he was pro se. Mr. Klein: Were you in the courtroom for the trial? Mr. Bowden: I was in and out. I was in and out of court, because at that time I was working out in the field. He was tried by Luke Moore and Sullivan, who was in the U.S. Attorney’s Office at the time. I can’t think of Sullivan’s first name now. He tried the case. But it was very interesting. Mr. Klein: Should we talk about that deputy who was shot by one of the Greens? 76 Mr. Bowden: Norman Sherriff. Mr. Klein: What’s the name again? Mr. Bowden: Norman, N-O-R-M-A-N, Sherriff. Common spelling. He was a Deputy United States Marshal. Before Norman was shot, it was commonplace for families and attorneys of folks who were incarcerated to ask the court to release them to go to attend a deceased person’s funeral. And that’s what this was about. The funeral home was at Fifth and Florida Avenue, Northwest – Hall’s Funeral Home. I sent an advance team to go up to check the situation out, to do the advance. I had a number of deputies assigned to take the defendant – one of these Green brothers. An uncle, or father, a male person in that family had died, and they were brought up. One of these brothers was on bond. So Sherriff’s death preceded this takeover, because one of these brothers was out in the community on bond. And the detail went up to the funeral home. We try to make an arrangement with the funeral director to go in early, do the viewing and leave before the family would get there. Because then you’ve got too many people involved. Mr. Klein: So leave before the service? Mr. Bowden: Before the service. Because it was just a viewing. When they got there, it was inside. They noticed the brother on bond came in and left. Sherriff was standing outside by his car – in the winter – watching. I don’t know whether Sherriff recognized this fellow as the brother or not. When he came out, he turned and went away from Sherriff, went around the building and came in the side door of the funeral home. And there were four or five deputies in there. He had a gun, got the drop on the deputies and got their guns. And he came out and started 77 toward Sherriff with his brother who was in handcuffs and leg irons. And Sherriff had on an overcoat, and when he came out, Sherriff didn’t get a chance to get his gun and he shot him. And he went down Fifth Street, had a car waiting, and took off. Mr. Klein: Did Sherriff have a family? Mr. Bowden: Yeah. He had a wife, no children. Mr. Klein: He had a wife. And about how old was he? Mr. Bowden: Mid-forties. He had spent some time in the military. He may have been an early retiree out of the military. Mr. Klein: So how long about had he been with the Marshals Service? Mr. Bowden: About five or six years at that time. They got caught. A Metropolitan Police motorcycle officer caught them going up Irving Street. They were on the lookout for the car and that kind of stuff. Mr. Klein: The same day? Mr. Bowden: Oh, yeah. They were in hot pursuit. So we don’t do funeral details anymore. Mr. Klein: And the brother was tried for the murder of Sherriff and convicted? Mr. Bowden: Right. Well that was part of this – Mr. Klein: That’s how he ended up in the cellblock for the takeover. Mr. Bowden: Yeah, he had other stuff as well. You see one of them was already in jail, and this one had other stuff, but he was out on bond on the robbery case. But now he has got this homicide. So you can appreciate where the Chief Deputy’s mind was. We know who’s in jail. So you can appreciate his negotiating tactics. You know, in negotiations you’re taught to make little concessions at a time until you get 78 what you want. But there’s a point where you’re not going to go any further on concessions. You throw all kinds of balloons up, but you have no intentions of fulfilling them. You understand that. Mr. Klein: Right. Mr. Bowden: So, I thought the Chief Deputy did a hell of a job myself. Mr. Klein: Obviously, he got six or eight people out alive. Mr. Bowden: But, of course, somebody else didn’t feel that way about it. Mr. Klein: Right. How did the other deputies in the Marshals Office react to this death? Mr. Bowden: Oh, it was a sad occasion – a sad thing – because he was a very, very well-liked person. Unlike today, the personnel lived here in the District or Maryland or Virginia. And they were home, if you will, not transient. So you developed relationships, you know, long-term relationships, and camaraderie and that kind of stuff. There’s camaraderie here now, but many of the deputies now are just passing through. Because their families are other places and they are just here to get his two or three years in and he wants to be with his family. So he doesn’t develop that family feeling to the guy who’s sitting next to him because he’s not going to know him but two or three years. Mr. Klein: Right. So you all would know each other well, and your wives would know each other and the rest. So you knew Sherriff’s family? Mr. Bowden: Yes. Outside of work you had a social relationship. You may not have been in and out of each other’s house every day, that kind of stuff, but you knew his wife when you saw her. That kind of thing. Mr. Klein: And just if you want to say a few words about his personality and the rest. 79 Mr. Bowden: Great guy. Easy-going. Very likeable. He was a rising star as far as I was concerned. I saw a lot of potential in Norman Sherriff in terms of being a leader in the Marshals Service because he had that kind of charisma and kind of attitude toward the job and toward people. Very good people person. And it was just a sad case that he died the way he did. He never got a shot off. Never got a shot off. Mr. Klein: Because the gun would be holstered inside of the – Mr. Bowden: Yeah. Because this is a viewing, and it’s in the winter, and on a public street. You don’t want to be standing there with your gun in your hand. Mr. Klein: Is that the only deputy to have died in the line of duty in this office in recent memory – Mr. Bowden: In recent times. In recent memory. Mr. Klein: Since you’ve been in the office? Mr. Bowden: Right. In recent memory. Back in the early 18-something, a deputy got killed. I don’t have any data. But in recent memory we had two to die in office. One had a heart attack in the office, the other had a heart attack on a training mission in Florida. They died in the line of duty, if you will, because they were on duty. But not as a consequence of a homicide. He’s the only one who died in action if you’re trying to make a distinction. Mr. Klein: Have there been other serious attacks on deputies that are worth mentioning as part of this, or – 80 Mr. Bowden: No, not any serious attacks. You’re going to have fights with inmates, but I don’t think it’s anything that I would report. Incidents, but not anything of historical significance I would think. Mr. Klein: I guess moving on I should ask about any other significant trials you’ve been involved in or other significant historical events before we get to the facts of your personal retirement, et cetera. To set a historical record. Mr. Bowden: I sat in on Microsoft which I thought was very, very interesting because it was not a criminal trial. But it was very interesting in terms of the amount of money that the digital age generates. And I’m not being critical of anyone’s ability and fortune, but I heard a statement – supposed to have been a fact – that Microsoft invested $25 million in a project and realized it was not a good project and said the heck with it. And moved on to something else. Mr. Klein: You heard that at trial? Mr. Bowden: Yes. Mr. Klein: As part of the trial? Mr. Bowden: Twenty-five million dollars and they just said okay, that’s alright. We’ll go on to something else. Mr. Klein: Did you sit in on the whole trial? Mr. Bowden: Yes, each day. Mr. Klein: That’s another long one. Mr. Bowden: Yeah, another long trial. There were other interesting facets about it but that just stuck out in my mind how $25 million just “zip.” 81 Mr. Klein: Are there any interesting lawyers that you’ve seen in the courtroom that stuck in your mind that you might want to mention. Mr. Bowden: Oh, yes. Oh, yes. Belford Lawson, Ed Williams, Brendan Sullivan, Dovey J. Roundtree, Curtis Mitchell, Vincent Fuller, Vince Alto, Kenneth Mundy, John Shorter, Jake Stein, Plato Cacheris, and William B. Bryant. Mr. Klein: Before he was a judge, you saw him as a lawyer. Mr. Bowden: Saw him try cases. A guy by the name of McLaughlin (or McLofton). We used to call him the Green Hornet. I can’t think of his first name. A very, very dramatic guy and theatrical. Very theatrical. The stuff that he did then you couldn’t – and of course they wouldn’t permit it now. Mr. Klein: Like what. Were these criminal trials or civil trials with the Green Hornet. Mr. Bowden: McLaughlin had a habit of creating documents during the course of trial and he would have it marked for identification, present it to the witness, and ask the witness had he seen it before. Now this was a self-made document that Mac made while at the counsel table. No authenticity about it at all, and of course the witness would say I’ve never seen it before. Do you know what it is, no I don’t know what it is. He’d say, no more questions. And he’d move it into evidence as his exhibit. And during the course of his oral argument to the jury he would talk about that. And he would say they brought this expert in here and he has never seen this document before. And it would just create some confusion to the jury. Mr. Klein: And he was talking about the document that the lawyer had scribbled up? Mr. Bowden: Yeah. It was a phony piece of paper. 82 Mr. Klein: What about Judge Bryant as a lawyer, before he became a judge? What kind of cases was he doing? Mr. Bowden: Mostly criminal. He did some civil stuff, but mostly criminal. But what I remember most about his trying cases as a prosecutor as well as a defense attorney, is the way he would select a jury. Body language from a trial attorney is in some cases more important than verbal language. In those days, when Bill Bryant was trying cases, the court would put twelve members of the jury in the jury box and you would strike from the jury box. When Bill Bryant was the prosecutor, sitting at the table nearest the jury box, he never would look up at the jury. They would put twelve people in the jury box. The court would say, “Mr. Bryant.” He would be busy writing, taking notes, scribbling something on a pad. The court would oftentimes have to call him twice. “Mr. Bryant.” “Yes, Your Honor?” “You have any strikes?” “No, Your Honor, the Government’s satisfied.” And this would go on throughout the selection. The defense counsel would be striking. “Mr. Bryant?” “The Government’s satisfied.” And what this told the jury is, I don’t care who you put in the jury box, my case is strong enough for a conviction. I don’t have to pick over whether you look like you like me or you don’t like me. He had done his voir dire. And he was very effective that way. And his cross-examination of a witness was so artful, tactful. He was just a stripper. If he caught one in what he called an untruth, he would feed him enough concrete around his feet until he would sink himself. And the way he would turn his back on a witness would tell the jury, I don’t believe a word and you shouldn’t believe a word this person is saying. It’s very effective. Now Edward Williams 83 was a lawyer who always knew his cases and always had his facts in order. So did Bryant. Both of them used very, very few notes when doing their closing arguments. The court would allow you to walk in those days. They didn’t have a PA system. So you had to stand where you could talk loud enough so the jury and the court and the jury could hear you, and the court would allow you to move about. And they would just stand and argue their case. Recall names, dates, and places. I just found it fascinating. And when they would ask a question of a witness, the follow-up question made sense. Some attorneys have a list of ten questions that they are going to ask regardless of what the answer is to the first question. The second question is what I have on my list. So the jury loses continuity or loses thought. But these attorneys, they painted a picture in their direct and in their cross-examination. The picture they wanted you to see. Now I’m sure they had a list of questions somewhere in their mind, but they listened to the witnesses’ answer to each question first, before they asked the second question or the follow-up question. Mr. Klein: Did either of them, after a case was done, did you ever have a chance to talk to either of them about what they – Mr. Bowden: Oh yeah. That’s what I enjoyed about being in the courthouse. You got to know them well enough to critique, if you will. Ask them certain things. Now Bill McLaughlin was an orator. Luke Moore was an orator. You could count on them quoting someone, Tennyson, Shakespeare. Because each case they had had some makeup that a quote would satisfy. They either started their argument off with one, or ended with one. And it was their use of the language that would have the 84 jury on the edge of their seats. I retired in 1987 and fulfilled one of my joys of traveling for three or four years and got bored with that and had an opportunity to come back to the U.S. Marshals Office as a private contractor to be with the people and the place that I enjoy, and that’s why I’m still here having fun. Mr. Klein: Sounds good. That’s better than retirement. Mr. Bowden: Right. Exactly. Mr. Klein: Okay. Any other subjects we should cover now or you want us to wait until you see the transcript. Mr. Bowden: Right. And make a note. There’s some other cases.